Lindsey Vonn is flat out the most successful American woman skier in history. She is one of the few world-class, four-event ski racers. She is the only American woman to have captured downhill gold at the Olympics and the only American woman with three World Cup overall titles.
Vonn, who last year finished second in the World Cup overall race after winning the title the previous three years, is well on her way to reclaiming the title. She has won five of the six races she started.
She has now won 46 races in her career, the most of any U.S. skier.
Ski champions have frequently come from the smallest and most obscure dots on the map, and that would certainly describe Buck Hill, Minn., the ski area not far from Lindsey’s home and just outside the Twin Cities. After winning the the North American junior championships and then a world junior championship in Italy, the first female American to do so, she and her mother moved to Colorado so Vonn could train at Ski Club Vail, an elite winter-sports academy.
At the 2002 Olympics, Lindsey Kildow, just 17 years old, finished a surprising sixth in the combined event, the highest placing by an American woman skier that year. Over the next few years, Vonn became a rising star on the World Cup circuit.
Vonn adopted her now famous workout regimen shortly after her crash in 2006 Torino Olympics. She maintains that her grueling workout schedule gives her not just strength but also the confidence that she is stronger than her competitors.
In the ‘09/’10 season, she became the first American skier to win three discipline titles in a single season, taking the Downhill, Super G and Super Combined crowns (she repeated all three titles the following season). In Vancouver, Vonn lived up to her billing as the golden girl of the Winter Olympics, as she took gold in Downhill and bronze in Super G. She ended the season earning her third overall World Cup title.
Continuing her blaze of glory, the first lady of alpine racing was named the Laureus World Sports Awards Sportswoman of the Year for 2010, picked up the 2010 and 2011 ESPY award and also bagged a part in her favourite TV show Law & Order.
For more about Lindsey check out her feature article in Issue No. 4 of Oakley’s One Icon Magazine.