Lindsey Vonn, who wrapped up her fifth downhill title last month, captured the 53rd World Cup win of her career and moved within reach of Hermann Maier's single season 2,000 point record with victory in Schladming (Mitch Gunn - www.sportsphotographer.eu)
SCHLADMING, Austria (March 14) – Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) charged the sun-softened Schladming downhill to win the 53rd Audi FIS Alpine World Cup of her career and edge closer to toppling Austrian Hermann Maier's single season record of 2,000 points that has stood for the last 12 years. With the victory, Vonn sits at 1,908 points also notched her 12th win of the season surpassing the American record she set in 2009. After the race, Vonn officially received her fifth consecutive World Cup downhill crystal globe, which she secured a month earlier on the 2014 Olympic slope in Sochi, Russia.
Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) won the World Cup Finals downhill for her 53rd career victory.
Vonn now has 1,908 World Cup points and is within reach of Austrian Hermann Maier's single season 2,000 point record set in 2000.
The women's single season record is owned by Croatian Janica Kostelic with 1,970 points during the 2006 season.
Vonn has won 12 World Cup races this season, surpasing her career-high of 11 set in 2010.
Vonn recorded her 17th podium of the World Cup season, one short of the single-season record of 18 held by Hanni Wenzel of Lichtenstein and Swede Pernilla Wiberg.
She had already locked her fifth straight World Cup downhill title last month in Sochi, Russia.
The women's downhill team, including Stacey Cook (Mammoth Mountain, CA) and Leanne Smith (North Conway, NH) won the nation's downhill standings by 636 points over Austria.
The World Cup Finals continue Thursday with women's super G. Vonn, Mancuso and Smith will start for the U.S. Ski Team.
Vonn leads the super G standings by 94 points. A title win would be the 16th of her career.
QUOTES Lindsey Vonn Today was a big step and, if all goes perfectly well, hopefully tomorrow I can win again and try to close this record and reach a dream I didn’t even think was possible.
I love hearing the national anthem. It always means something special to me. I feel like I have heard the national anthem a lot this year and it has been great.
I have such great teammates and such great coaches and I feel like we are all working so hard together. Being able to ski and do what I love is amazing but having the support of the team and everyone has been even more amazing.
There have been a lot of points in my life where I have realized certain things. I think my crash in Torino was a turning point in my career and I think this season in general has been a turning point for me personally, just realizing you can have a lot of fun and still be serious.
I am having so much fun out there and I am hanging out with the girls on the team and I am just more relaxed this year and I have really enjoyed everything. I have enjoyed every day, not just podiums and not just winning - of course its nice - but just being able to do what I love is the best. Just going out there and doing what you love to do everyday is a privilege.