Sunday, so the end of an era in Alpine ski racing. Lyndsey Vonn, followed Aksel Lund Svindal now into retirement, having successfully secured a final medal at the F I S world Alpine Ski World Championships in Are in Sweden.
On Saturday, in a very competitive and hard fought race, a Svindal came only a fraction of a second from winning the men’s downhill ski race, and what was his last competitive race in his long and successful career. Now 36 years old, he had the Olympic gold for the downhill in Korea last year.
This time he won a silver medal in a closely fought battle with his good friend Kjetil Jansrud in a reversal of last years Olympic games result, where Jansrud wine silver. The competition behind included the current FIS World Cup Downhill champion Beat Feuz and the this years Wengen Downhill winner Vincent Kriechmayer. The extremely heavy snow made viability difficult and there was less than half a second between first and fourth.
|Men’s Downhill Result 2019|
|1. Kjetil Jansrud||NOR||1:19:98|
|2. Aksel Lund Svindal||NOR||+0:02|
|3. Vincent Kriechmayer||AUT||+0:33|
Like Svindal, Lyndsey Vonn has seen the last few years of her career mired by injuries, that have prevented her from skiing at the height of her powers. After, falling in the Super G earlier in the week, in Sundays FIS Women’s Downhill World Championship race, she came close to reliving her best, by winning a bronze medal in another close fought race. The crowd watched on with bated breath after she had come down as the quickest racer. Waiting and perhaps hoping to see her finish her career with a gold medal. However the strength of one of the new forces in Women’s Alpine speed skiing, lead the way to win the gold by nearly half a second.
|Women’s Downhill Result 2019|
|1. Ilka Stuhec||SLO||1:01:74|
|2. Corinne Suter||SUI||+0:23|
|3. Lyndsey Vonn||USA||+0:49|
In interviews immediately after the race, it was obvious that Vonn had fulfilled her final dream, to finish in a podium position and go out on a high. Seeing her receive flowers and walk around the press area with the man who’s record of 86 World Cup race wins, she was trying to beat, Swedish legend Ingemar Stenmark, showed a level of satisfaction and also the class of the outstanding women’s ski star of the last 10 years.
It has never been her skiing alone that is endeared her to the fans and general public alike. Undoubtedly, it is her big personality and with her approachable nature, which has set her apart from most other skiers.