Is Mikaela Shiffrin the next Lindsey Vonn?
If you ask her, the answer is a resounding “no.”
Shiffrin, an 18-year-old Alpine skier and Olympic hopeful, has been making waves with her performance, and after taking silver in the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women’s Giant Slalom at Beaver Creek, Colo., on Sunday, she’s likely secured her spot for Team USA in Sochi. Many, including The Daily Beast and Associated Press, immediately began comparing her to Vonn, who recently injured her knee — less than three months before the 2014 Games.
But the Colorado native is quick to dismiss the notion that she’s taking the place of America’s skiing sweetheart.
“When they say I’m the next Lindsey Vonn, they are shooing her out the door, and I don’t think that’s fair,” she told TODAY.com. “Imagine being her, reading that someone is the next Lindsey Vonn — it’s like saying, ‘Get out of the way, there’s no room for two Lindsey Vonns.’”
For her part, Vonn told TODAY in an interview Nov. 27 that she was confident she’d make it to Sochi, and even medal, knee or no knee. And she has Shiffrin’s support.
“[Vonn has] been one of my greatest idols for really long time, and it’s even cooler that she’s one of my teammates,” Shffrin said. “I appreciate who she is and what she’s done for the sport. But she’s not done — she’s not even really close to done. Let her have her success and let me have my own — just call me Mikaela Shiffrin.”