Sport: Vonn sets sights on Olympics, records, racing against men - - PressFrom - US
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Sport Vonn sets sights on Olympics, records, racing against men

21:26  29 april  2017
21:26  29 april  2017 Source:   ap.org

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Vonn raced on the Olympic course in early March, finishing second in both the downhill and super-G. In Pyeongchang next February, she said she Another item high on Vonn ’s priority list — competing against the men . She’s lobbying hard for such a chance, but so far the International Ski Federation

The most decorated skier in American history has revived her request to race against men in a USSA to propose for Vonn to ski in World Cup men ’s downhill race . Vonn wants to “beat some boys Vonn , currently in training for the Pyeongchang Olympics after suffering a fractured humerus in

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Lindsey Vonn already had her place in history. Her desire to race against men , said Aksel Lund Svindal, chimed with everyone who wanted equality, while She retires having won more World Cup races than any other woman and no female racer has more Olympic medals than Vonn 's two in the

While Vonn participating in a men ’s race would be a major publicity move for the sport, there are a good deal of issues standing in the way. As a compromise, Lindsey Vonn has offered to forgo two training runs on the course in an attempt to even things out and still be allowed to race against men .

DENVER (AP) -- Always the consummate planner, Lindsey Vonn has every detail scribbled in a calendar from now until her season starts in November. Workouts, upcoming trips, ski camps, appointments - all of the ordinary stuff.

The bigger-ticket items? Now those are simply memorized. In the twilight of her career, the four-time overall World Cup champion has a priority list of aspirations before even thinking of stepping away:

- Break Ingemar Stenmark's wins record (once thought untouchable).

- ''Defend'' her downhill crown at the Winter Olympics in South Korea (she didn't get that chance in Sochi because of a knee injury).

- Compete against the men in a World Cup race (should skiing's governing body ever give the idea a thumbs up).

''I'm not going to stop until I reach my goals,'' Vonn said. ''There's too much I have left to accomplish.''

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Lindsey Vonn pulled back her proposal to enter a men ’s World Cup race in November, instead keeping her focus on training to break the “As no renewed proposal was brought up regarding Lindsey Vonn ’s request to race with the men in Lake Louise, this topic was MORE: Lindsey Vonn ’s Olympic legacy.

Vonn in the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City. Then 17 and known as Lindsey Kildow, she finished sixth in her first Olympic race .CreditAl Bello/Getty If she has been more out of sight in the greater ski racing community, she is not out of mind. “Maybe some girls have forgotten how great Vonn is, but I

At the moment, her plan is to race at least through the 2018-19 season - health willing, of course.

But right now, the 32-year-old Vonn feels, knock on wood, quite healthy. She hasn't been able to say that very often.

A quick glance at her medical chart: Bruised hip in training crash before Olympics (2006), sliced right thumb on champagne bottle while celebrating a victory (2009), severely bruised shin (2010), serious knee injuries (2013-14), broken left ankle (2015) and fractures near her left knee joint in a crash (2016).

Most recently, she broke her right arm in a November training run. It required surgery and led to nerve damage so severe she could hardly wiggle her fingers at first and had to tape the ski pole to her glove in order to race. She's still trying to recover full sensation.

''All the obstacles I've faced, it makes me appreciate things that much more,'' Vonn said in a recent interview as she hosted a camp in Denver designed to empower girls to reach their goals. ''But I can't worry about injuries. If you worry about it, you're always going to ski scared.''

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“You can set up a day where a female racer can compete against men racers , just as a show, but it has nothing to do with competition,” Skaardal said. Next season Vonn wants her primary focus to be on the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, hence her desire for the race against men to

Skier Lindsey Vonn makes bid to race against men in World Cup downhill. “I take the Olympics very seriously and what they mean and what they represent, what walking under our The Minnesota native has logged a record 77 career World Cup victories, more than any other woman and second

That's never been an issue with Vonn.

''There are a lot of athletes who achieve amazing results and when they get hurt, especially multiple times, they ask themselves, `Is it worth it?''' U.S. Alpine director Patrick Riml said. ''Her hunger to become a better athlete and win more races is as big as it was when she was 20 years old.

''Her determination, her drive to become better, to win more races, it's unbelievable.''

Vonn has a number in mind - 86. That's how many World Cup wins Stenmark accumulated during the Swedish great's extraordinary career. Vonn is currently at 77.

''If I ended my career today, I'd still be really satisfied with what I've done,'' said Vonn , who broke Austrian great Annemarie Moser-Proell's women's record of 62 World Cup wins in January 2015. ''But I think to beat a record like his (Stenmark), it would be very significant.''

These days, everything is geared toward the Winter Olympics in South Korea. After capturing downhill gold at the 2010 Vancouver Games, she missed the Sochi Games because of a knee injury.

''My main goal is to defend or repeat - I don't know what you call it,'' she joked.

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Olympic gold medalist and four-time World Cup champion skier Lindsey Vonn is one step closer to her goal of competing against men . Nonetheless, Vonn left the meeting optimistic. "We had quite a bit of positive feedback, which was surprising but awesome," Vonn said in a video for Uninterrupted.

Vonn won Olympic gold in the downhill at the 2010 Games and, after missing the 2014 Olympics because of a knee injury, this was a chance to gild her stellar racing career with another Olympic Too bad for Vonn there was no Olympic medal awarded for that. It was the one gold she deserved.

Vonn raced on the Olympic course in early March, finishing second in both the downhill and super-G. In Pyeongchang next February, she said she will compete in the downhill, super-G, giant slalom and the combined, but skip the slalom.

According to her crammed calendar, this recent block of time was reserved for rest. She and her boyfriend, Kenan Smith , a former assistant wide receivers coach for the Los Angeles Rams, recently escaped to the beach in the Turks and Caicos Islands .

Soon on her to-do list, test out new Head skis and boots in Europe. Vonn's been hurt so much that she really hasn't had a chance to try out the latest equipment.

''I need to get up to date,'' Vonn said. ''I know that if I can fine-tune some of the details, I can find some more time in my racing.''

That will certainly come in handy against a crop of talented skiers that includes freshly minted World Cup overall champion Mikaela Shiffrin, who grew up holding Vonn in high esteem, the same way Vonn did with 1998 super-G Olympic gold medalist Picabo Street.

''There's clearly no one out there in the technical disciplines, especially the slalom, that's on Mikaela's level,'' said Vonn, who lives in Vail, Colorado. ''She's had an incredible career so far.''

One day Shiffrin could be chasing Vonn's marks. At 22, Shiffrin already has 31 World Cup wins. For a comparison, Vonn had four at the same age.

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Vonn declined to race Friday afternoon's slalom section of the combined, but said she was confident of improving her downhill speed in Sunday's race . After all, Vonn won downhill bronze in Pyeongchang last year to become the oldest woman to win an Alpine skiing medal at the Winter Olympics .

Vonn , the all-time winningest female World Cup racer , is hoping to race a downhill versus the men during the 2018-19 season. With 77 World Cup wins, Vonn is chasing the mark of 86 held by Ingemar Stenmark. Her focus also is on the Pyeongchang Olympics in February.

''It would be great if Mikaela's able to break it,'' said Vonn, whose foundation partnered with "ZGirls" to host confidence-building programs.

Another item high on Vonn's priority list - competing against the men. She's lobbying hard for such a chance, but so far the International Ski Federation (FIS) has yet to sign off. Riml said he will push for rules alterations at the FIS meetings in May to possibly give Vonn and other female skiers that opportunity down the road.

''All the men say, `We don't think she's going to beat us,' which is what they're going to say, and also that, `It will be great for our sport,''' Vonn said. ''So, what's the harm?

''Hopefully, we're able to accomplish it before I retire.''

Related slideshow: Lindsey Vonn, on and off the slopes (Provided by photo services)

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