|BORMIO, Italy (March 12) - Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) fulfilled her lifelong goal of winning the World Cup downhill title when she received the coveted crystal globe on Wednesday during World Cup Finals in Bormio, Italy. She received the globe in the same village where her childhood hero Picabo Street first won it in 1995 when Vonn was just nine."It's amazing. I was really happy about it in Whistler when I knew I had won, but it's not the same until you actually get the globe. It's beautiful," Vonn said. "I've been dreaming about the downhill globe since I was a kid and it's surreal that it has finally come true. It's amazing to finally have it in my hands. It's everything that had dreamed it would be." |
Flatland Midwesterner Rules the Big Mountains
Vonn grew up on tiny Buck Hill outside Minneapolis. She showed signs of promise as a young ski racer in a USSA club program under noted coach Erich Sailer. After a few years, she moved on to Ski Club Vail where she continued her ascent to becoming the best in the world.
"It's not easy to get to where I am. When you see me race, in the start or in the finish, that's the final product. You don't see everything that goes into it," Vonn said. "It's a lot of work. In the summer I'm in the gym between six and eight hours a day. It's tough."
Dream Started with a Hero
Vonn has been a competitive skier for most of her life, spending countless hours trying to reach extreme goals. But being able to attain the World Cup downhill title holds a special and personal significance to her that dates back to an encounter when she was a young girl.
"When I first met Picabo Street was when I first dreamed of winning the downhill title," Vonn said. Street also won her first of two World Cup downhill globes in Bormio..
"She really inspired me to want to win it. And I've been working hard to get there ever since. I just can't even believe it. It's been a lifelong goal of mine and it's finally here so I'm just ecstatic," Vonn said.
Sights Now Set on Overall
Vonn was awarded her globe following the cancellation of both the men's and women's World Cup Final downhill races due to soft snow conditions.
"I was a little disappointed that the race got canceled today. I think that hurts my chances of the overall a little bit, but I'm going to keep fighting," Vonn said. "I just have to keep on doing what I've been doing and hopefully we have some more races this week."
Although it was Vonn's main focus to become the World Cup downhill champion, another title is within her reach as she sits in the lead of the overall World Cup standings.
"It's huge. I wasn't even close to thinking about the overall this year. I was just hoping for a downhill title," Vonn said. "The overall is such a respected and coveted trophy. I can't even tell you how much it would mean to me if I won it. Not very many people in the history of the United States have won it."
Vonn, along with fellow American Bode Miller (Bretton Woods, NH) are both poised to win the overall World Cup titles. It would mark the first U.S. wins since Phil Mahre and Tamara McKinney both won in 1983
"It would be a pretty historic day. Hopefully it works out for the two of us. The overall is so high up there. It's like an Olympic gold medal," Vonn said.
World Cup Finals continue Thursday with men's and women's super G. WCSN.com will be broadcasting all World Cup Finals races starting daily at 8:00 a.m. ET and remaining on-demand for subscribers.
To hear Lindsey Vonn's press conference click here.
photo Getty Images
photo Getty Images