Shiffrin wins at Squaw Valley to boost World Cup lead

Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States competes in the first run of the Audi FIS World Cup Ladies' Giant Slalom on March 10, 2017 in Squaw Valley, California

American Mikaela Shiffrin tightened her grip on the overall women's alpine World Cup points lead Friday by winning the giant slalom race at Squaw Valley, California.

Shiffrin had the fastest time on the opening run at the 1960 Winter Olympic site in 1:08.75, putting her .20 of a second ahead of World Cup giant slalom season points leader Tessa Worley of France to claim the final starting spot for the second run.

Shiffrin was 1.14 seconds ahead of leader Federica Brignone of Italy after the first interval of her final run, but slipped .03 of a second off the Italian's pace at the last interval before recovering to win by .07 of a second with a two-run time of 2:16.42 with Worley third on 2:17.28.

The 21-year-old American captured her 10th World Cup victory of the season ahead of Saturday's Squaw Valley slalom race -- the last tuneup for the World Cup Finals next week at Aspen, Colorado, near Shiffrin's Vail home.

"I'm so excited because I'm racing in the USA," Shiffrin said.

With five total races remaining, Shiffrin leads the overall World Cup standings with 1,423 points, 278 more than second-place Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia.

She has won six slalom races, three giant slaloms and a super combined this season, the best total by any man or woman.

Shiffrin ranks second in the giant slalom standings with 560 points but closed the gap on Worley to 80 points with one race remaining at Aspen. She is the only woman who could deny Worley, the reigning world champion in the discipline, her first World Cup giant slalom title.

Shiffrin's best finish in the overall standings was fourth in 2015 but taking the World Cup crown would make her the youngest man or woman to claim the throne since Croatia's Janica Kostelic in 2003.

The American star turns 22 on Monday when the World Cup Final downhill training runs begin.

The American won her third consecutive world slalom title earlier this year at St. Moritz. In 2014 at Sochi, Shiffrin became the youngest slalom champion in Olympic alpine ski history at age 18.