Shiffrin will defend super-G world title in Cortina

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Mikaela Shiffrin competing in the giant slalom at Kranjska Gora in January
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Mikaela Shiffrin announced on Tuesday that she will defend her super-G world title during the upcoming alpine skiing world championships, even though she hasn't raced in the discipline for more than a year.

American Shiffrin outlined her schedule for the worlds, which run between February 8-21 at Cortina d'Ampezzo in Italy, in a media conference on Tuesday.

She said will compete in the combined on February 8 and the super-G the next day before taking on the giant slalom on February 18 and the slalom, which she has won at the last four worlds, on the penultimate day of competition.

"I've been able to get a little bit of super-G training, I've had three days on my super-G skis so far, I think we'll be able to get one more in the next few days here before heading to Cortina," she told reporters.

Shiffrin suggested that she would not be among the favourites for the super-G, saying that her 2019 win in Sweden was a "bit of a surprise" and highlighting the form of Swiss Lara Gut-Behrami who has won the last four World Cup races in the discipline.

"I'm really going into the speed section of the world champs with the intention of almost trying to take it as an opportunity for training," she said.

"Obviously it's a race and it's the world championships so I'll try to ski as fast as I can, and I think I'll be able to get a pretty good result, but when you look at what Lara's been able to do the last few races, I have no guarantee that it's gonna stack up or that's going to be good enough to defend my super-G title."

The 25-year-old, who has won three World Cup overall titles, has not taken part in a speed race (downhill or super-G) since she took the honours at the Bansko super-G in January last year.

Shiffrin had a difficult 2020 which was marked by the sudden death of her father last February.

She nonetheless is third overall on the all-time World Cup winners' list with 68 victories and has a total of seven world championship medals, including five golds.

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