Mikaela Shiffrin, the 2018 Olympic gold medalist in the giant slalom, saw her title defense end early.
Shiffrin failed to finish the first run of her first event of the Beijing Winter Olympics on Sunday night (Monday morning in China). She booted out entering the turn into the seventh gate. Shiffrin lost the edge of her ski as she tried to cut a sharp angle.
The fall disqualified her from the event.
Because she failed to finish her first run, she didn't get a chance at making her second run in the event and thus didn't get a chance to medal.
It was her first DNF in the discipline in over four years.
Mikaela Shiffrin DNFs in a giant slalom for the first time since Jan. 23, 2018, ending a 30-race streak in the discipline.— Nick Zaccardi (@nzaccardi) February 7, 2022
Shiffrin described what happened in a postrace interview with NBC.
"I was attacking and it was just a small mistiming of when I set my edges and just slipped out, and it was such an amazing surface and amazing conditions," she said. "You don't have any room for small errors. I was pushing, so I was happy about that, but . . . it stings."
She was looking to become the first American alpine ski racer to win three Olympic gold medals, having also won the slalom in Sochi in 2014.
While Shiffrin's quest for gold in the giant slalom ended, she still has a chance for gold in these Olympics. She'll ski in the four other events in this cycle — the women's Super-G (Feb. 10), women's downhill (Feb. 14), women's combined downhill (Feb. 16) and women's combined slalom (Feb. 17).
Shiffrin was disappointed by the result but also acknowledged that she will have more chances to leave her mark in Beijing.
"It's hard not to dwell but I just cannot afford to spend or waste energy on something that's now in the past. I'm going to reset and focus on what I can control," she said. "It's still a long two weeks and I'm still looking forward to it, but I'm not going to dwell, because that won't help me at all."
She has won 11 World Cup titles and has six World Championship titles, including four in the slalom and one in the Super-G.