With Back-To-Back Downhill Wins, Lindsey Vonn Serves Notice For PyeongChang

By Gary R. Blockus | Feb. 04, 2018, 10:16 a.m. (ET)
Lindsey Vonn reacts to winning the women's downhill at the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup on Feb. 4, 2018 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.

 

PyeongChang, beware. Lindsey Vonn is back and ready to claim her prize.

On Sunday, the three-time Olympian won her third straight world cup downhill to claim her women’s record 81st world cup win.

Vonn won her second straight downhill this weekend and her fifth career downhill in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. She has nine career world cup wins in Garmisch-Partenkirchen with a dozen podium finishers there.

Vonn, who won the gold medal in downhill and bronze in super-G at the Olympic Winter Games Vancouver 2010, defeated second-place Sofia Goggia of Italy for the second straight race. 

Vonn, 33, laid down a time of 1:37.92 as the seventh skier and sat through 35 other skiers before climbing to the top of the podium in the final warm-up for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018. 

Goggia finished in 1:38.03 to take second and Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein finished third in 1:38.04.

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Vonn’s 81 career victories are second all-time behind only Sweden’s Ingemar Stenmark, who won 86 world cup races.

 Vonn, who missed the Sochi Games four years ago due to injury, has won three of four world cup downhills since returning from resting her knee for almost a full month.

The U.S. Olympic alpine ski team took a blow on Saturday when Jackie Wiles crashed and suffered injuries to her left knee and leg, forcing her out of the PyeongChang Games.

Wiles is one of three U.S. women to earn a world cup podium in downhill this season after finishing third last month in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy. Mikaela Shiffrin is the other. Shiffrin, the defending Olympic slalom and world cup overall champ, skipped this weekend’s races to prepare for PyeongChang.

"We are all extremely disappointed that Jackie suffered this injury so close to the Games,” said Luke Bodensteiner, U.S. Ski & Snowboard chief of sport. “It’s a big loss to our alpine ski team, especially after her very strong results this season. We will do everything we can to support her in her rehabilitation and we’re already looking forward to seeing Jackie back in competitive action, stronger than ever, as soon as possible.”

The United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Ski & Snowboard have not yet determined if her spot will be replaced under the team quota.

Gary R. Blockus is a journalist from Allentown, Pennsylvania who has covered multiple Olympic Games. He is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.