Friday, January 18, 2019
# 15 - for Lindsey Vonn is a beating defeat. Despite all their ambitions for their 83rd World Cup victory, the American ski superstar fails the World Cup comeback. Although the result can be explained well, Vonn asks the clothing question.
Lindsey Vonn threw a kiss into the audience, then raised her arms apologetically. "I am certainly not happy with this placement, I expect more from me," said the Olympic champion after her failed comeback at the World Cup downhill race of Cortina d'Ampezzo. 15th, 1.19 seconds behind the best time of Ramona Siebenhofer from Austria - that was not in the style of the long-standing "Speed Queen".
While the two Germans Kira Weidle and Viktoria Rebensburg sold well in places eight and eleven in the Dolomites, Vonn was far away from former strength and dominance. "I always have the strongest hopes that it's easy to come back and get me on the podium right away, but things have to work for me as well," she said, "I did not deliver as I had hoped."
"The Queen of Snow is back"
Everything seemed to be done for a dream return after another knee injury last November. The sun was shining on the "Olimpia delle Tofane", where Vonn had already triumphed twelve times, the freshly snowed Dolomite panorama showed its most beautiful side. Many of the approximately 500 spectators in the stands kept their fingers crossed for Vonn. "The Queen of Snow is Back," was on a poster, and when Vonn appeared on the video screen during her race preparations, cheers erupted.
But when the 34-year-old went to the track at 12:28, the support of Sister Laura and the L.A.'s buddies did not help her either. Vonn pattered in the middle section, "that was certainly not fast and frustrates me," she said about her small exit into deeper course. Quite unexpectedly, the "huge mistake" but did not come, since her training accident she was no longer driven downhill. "I have to be more realistic," said Vonn, "it takes a bit of time to get that speed back."
"Will change underpants and racing suit"
But if she does not have something on her hunt for Ingemar Stenmark's victory record (86 achievements) then it's time. Her body is no longer with, in Cortina she drove for the first time in a special run with rails on both knees, in March should be over. On Saturday and Sunday Vonn gets more chances in Cortina on the second descent and in the Super-G ("I feel better"). If you can then succeed the 83rd victory? "I'll swap my underpants and my race suit and I hope that makes me faster," she said, laughing.
Like Vonn, Weidle (0.76 seconds back) underwent a gross blunder, which brought her around a podium. "Placement is okay," she said after her second best career result, "and I've seen that I can really be really fast down here." The same was true for Rebensburg, which successfully tested a new shoe. "There you have more fun again, if you have the feeling, you can make a difference and drive in front," she said and therefore decided to compete on Saturday. Michaela Wenig (+1.22) came in 17th.