By now, Mikaela Shiffrin was supposed to have completed Olympic races in her two best disciplines: slalom and giant slalom.
Instead, thanks to weather postponements, she has yet to make her 2018 Olympic debut.
Weather permitting, Shiffrin will race tonight at 8 p.m. ET in giant slalom.
Less than 24 hours after finishing the two-run race, she will return to the snow in slalom. She is hoping to become the first woman to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals in the event.
Bode Miller, the most decorated U.S. Olympic skier who is now an Alpine skiing analyst for NBC Olympics, believes that Shiffrin will benefit from racing in giant slalom before slalom.
“The giant slalom is a little bit of an easier event to ease into the Olympics,” he said. “Slalom is stressful. Even though it’s her stronger event, I would like to see her get into a groove and get a medal in GS first.”
Miller is used to weather delays. At the 2010 Vancouver Games, he won the combined gold medal five days after the race was originally scheduled to take place.
“I think it helped me and has the potential to help Mikaela because she is so mentally tough,” Miller said. “Other people, when they wake up ready to race and then it gets canceled, they are so frazzled mentally because they were ready to go. Then it happens again, and by the second or third time, they are completely cooked. They’ve already expended their Olympic energy in these false starts, and then the race comes along and they are flat.”
Miller has been impressed watching the 22-year-old Shiffrin, the 2014 Olympic slalom champion and a three-time world champion in the event.
“There’s a lot of different ways you can qualify the ‘greatest ever,’ but in my opinion, at this point of her career, I think she’s the best I’ve ever seen, male or female,” Miller said. “She’s building and it seems like she’s only getting better.”
Watch Shiffrin tonight at 8 p.m. ET in giant slalom here: