Swiss superstar Vreni Schneider tied a World Cup record with her 13th victory of the season when she won a women’s giant slalom ski race today.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Schneider said after beating Yugoslavia’s Mateja Svet by .77 seconds for her sixth victory in seven giant slaloms this season.
The 13 victories equals the mark established by Sweden’s Ingemar Stenmark, who won 10 giant slaloms and three slaloms in 1979. One of Schneider’s victories was in a combined event, in which the result of a downhill and a slalom were factored together to form a third, or combined, result.
Schneider, winner of the women’s overall, giant slalom and slalom titles already, had previously broken the women’s record of 11 victories, set in 1973 by Austria’s Annemarie Moser-Proell.
Heading into the final women’s race of the season, a slalom on Saturday, Schneider, 24, has the opportunity to win an unprecedented 14th event and 13th race. A win also would give Schneider a sweep of the season’s seven slaloms, making her only the fourth skier to complete an unbeaten season in an Alpine discipline.
Jean-Claude Killy of France swept the five downhills contested in 1967, Moser-Proell won the eight women’s downhills in 1973 and Stenmark won all 10 giant slaloms in 1979.
Schneider completed two runs over the 50-gate, 4,089-foot Mt. Nishidate course in 2 minutes, 22.57 seconds. Svet, who finished second in the season giant slalom standings, was timed in 2:23.34.
Christine Meier of West Germany was third in 2:23.89.
Maria Walliser of Switzerland, a distant second behind her teammate in the overall standings, was fourth in 2:24.27.