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Vonn Dominates Cortina Downhill For 79th Career World Cup Win

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
January, 20 2018
Vonn, Wiles
Lindsey Vonn and Jackie Wiles celebrate their downhill podium performance in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy Sunday. (Getty Images/Agence Zoom - Christophe Pallot)

Beaming with confidence and skiing with power, Lindsey Vonn (Vail, Colo.) produced a dominating performance to win her 79th career FIS Ski World Cup race and secure her Olympic Team selection in Saturday’s downhill at Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy. Jackie Wiles (Aurora, Ore.) finished third and also punched her ticket to the 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

“I was definitely disappointed with my result yesterday with that big mistake, but today was a great run - clean, solid,” said Vonn, who won by 0.92-seconds over Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein. “I’m very happy with my skiing and it gives me a lot of confidence going forward into the Olympics.”

Wiles was skiing just off Vonn’s pace at the top intervals but nearly overcooked a turn after catching a rut. But she made a strong recovery and built speed toward the bottom of the course to grab her second career World Cup downhill podium.

“I had a lot of fun,” Wiles said. “A little scary at the bottom, but I kept is rolling and it came together. “

“It was a great day having Jackie on the podium,” added Vonn, who has been a mentor for Wiles and provided financial assistance for her early in her career through the Lindsey Vonn Foundation. “I’m really, really proud of her!”

 “She has done a lot to help me get to this point,” Wiles said of Vonn. “She’s a great friend and role model, and I’m super thrilled to be on the podium with her.”

It was a banner day for U.S. Ski Team with seven athletes finishing in the top 30, including Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, Colo.) in seventh; Breezy Johnson (Victor, Idaho) in 11th; Alice McKennis (Glenwood Springs, Colo.) 16th; Stacey Cook (Mammoth Mountain, Calif.) in 25th; and Laurenne Ross (Bend, Ore.) in 26th.

Shiffrin leads the overall World Cup standings by a massive 907 points over Italy’s Sofia Goggia.  She also leads the overall World Cup slalom and giant slalom standings and is third in the downhill standings behind Goggia and Weirather.

Up next, the women compete in super-G Saturday in Cortina. 

“I’m excited,” Vonn said of Sunday’s super-G. “I think I’m skiing better super-G than downhill. I have a lot of confidence from today and yesterday, so I’ll attack as always and see how it goes.”

Women’s downhill

All times EST
Friday, Jan. 19
4:00 p.m. - Men’s super-G; Kitzbuehel – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)

Saturday, Jan. 20
3:00 p.m. - Men’s downhill; Kitzbuehel – NBC (same day broadcast)
11:00 p.m. - Women’s downhill; Cortina – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)
12:00 a.m. - Men’s downhill; Kitzbuehel – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)

Sunday, Jan. 21
5:30 a.m. - Women’s super-G; Cortina – Olympic Channel TV
7:00 a.m. - Men’s slalom; Kitzbuehel – Olympic Channel TV
9:00 p.m. - Women’s super-G; Cortina – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)
10:00 p.m. - Men’s slalom; Kitzbuehel – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)

Tuesday, Jan. 23
6:30 a.m. - Women’s giant slalom; Kronplatz – Olympic Channel TV
2:30 p.m. - Men’s slalom; Schladming – Olympic Channel TV
12:00 a.m. - Men’s slalom; Schladming – NBCSN Encore (same day broadcast)