Shiffrin, Vlhova share Maribor giant slalom honours
Mikaela Shiffrin claimed a staggering 12th World Cup win of the season on Friday after finishing in a tie for first place alongside Slovakia's Petra Vlhova in the Maribor giant slalom.
Shiffrin held a 0.48-second lead after the first run, but the American lost time with sectors of the course shrouded in thick fog on her second run to finish level with Vlhova in a combined time of 2min 31.31sec.
The 23-year-old American, warming up for the start of the world championships in Sweden on Tuesday, is nearing former Swiss star Vreni Schneider's all-time record of 14 victories in a World Cup campaign.
"It was a fight in the second (run) and I almost lost it at the bottom, so it's always nice when you have this luck," said Shiffrin.
"I saw Petra from the start... I was like 'OK, I better up the ante a little bit.'"
For Vlhova, it was her fourth victory of the season having edged out two-time Olympic champion Shiffrin in last month's parallel slalom in Oslo and Flachau slalom.
"We are always very close and today we can share first place, so it's good for everyone and I'm just happy," said Vlhova.
Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway capitalised on a mistake from France's Tessa Worley, third after the morning descent in Slovenia, to grab the final spot on the podium.
Worley tumbled down to ninth after she was forced to slam on the brakes to avoid overshooting a gate after her skis caught a rut when well-placed on her second attempt.
Shiffrin, who skipped last week's speed events in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, leads Vlhova by a commanding 596 points in the overall standings as she bids for a third straight big crystal globe, and is 81 points ahead of Worley in the giant slalom standings.