Mikaela Shiffrin's return thwarted as race organisers announce cancellation of the meet due to the COVID-19 crisis
The women's FIS alpine skiing World Cup season has been cut short by the coronavirus crisis.
After the World Cup Finals scheduled for Cortina were cancelled last week, this weekend's event in Are, Sweden, has also been scrapped.
Double Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin had announced earlier on Wednesday (11 March) that she would make her return to action in Are following the sudden death of her father last month.
In a statement, race organisers said, “We are so sorry that we have to cancel the competitions that we have prepared for so long."
It means that Federica Brignone is the winner of the 2019-20 overall World Cup title, ending Shiffrin's three-year reign.
Brignone becomes the first Italian skier since Alberto Tomba in 1995 to win the big crystal globe, and the first Italian woman to do so.
According to the International Ski Federation (FIS), the decision was taken after members of the sponsor support team experienced symptoms of the coronavirus and one of them later tested positive.
The races in Are will not be replaced on the World Cup calendar and the 2019-2020 has been declared officially finished for the women.
Brignone, who won Olympic bronze in PyeongChang, capped off a successful season, with five World Cup wins and 11 podiums.
She topped the overall rankings with 1,378 points, followed by Shiffrin (1,225) and Petra Vlhova (1,189).
The 29-year-old also clinched the giant slalom and the combined globes.