Back On Top: Ailing Lindsey Vonn Records World Cup Hat-Trick in Canada, Svindal Double Podiums
It was another brilliant weekend for the Oakley alpine ski team; beginning with the ailing Lindsey Vonn securing a much needed hat-trick at the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup stop in Lake Louise, Canada and finishing with Aksel Lund Svindal placing second in both the men's downhill and super-g competitions at the Birds of Prey World Cup event in Beaver Creek, CO. Vonn, who has suffered from an intestinal ailment as of late, locked down her first alpine victories since her recent return to competition. The American racked up her staggering 54th, 55th and 56th career Audi FIS Alpine World Cup victories by sweeping the weekend in Canada. She blew away the competition by a 1.73 second margin in the first of two downhill races on the weekend. Vonn followed up with a .52 second win in the second downhill race on Saturday and completed the hat-trick by winning Sunday's super-g race. This was Vonn's second straight hat-trick in Lake Louise as she bumped her venue total to 14 career wins on the Alberta course.
Vonn's already impressive career took a turn for the historical this weekend when she matched and passed the great Swiss skier, Vreni Schneider for second on the all time wins list. Her weekend in Canada brought her career total to a staggering 56 career World Cup victories. Next up on the all-time list is Austrian Annemarie Moser-Proell who holds the record with 62 career wins.
"This weekend was a huge boost for my confidence," Vonn said. "I was definitely feeling extremely low after being in the hospital and my poor result in Aspen. But I knew if there was a place to turn it around it was Lake Louise. So I just tried to get myself every opportunity to rest and recover for the races this weekend."
The men took to the slopes of Beaver Creek, CO for the Birds of Prey event. On a course that Aksel Lund Svindal suffered one of the most devastating crashes of his career in 2007, the Norwegian powerhouse stormed to two, second place finishes during this year's competition. Svindal finished just behind the leaders in the downhill and super-g competitions this weekend, relying on his strength to keep him from another crash in Beaver Creek. His intense speed caused him to pump the breaks to avoid a spill, ultimately keeping him from the lead. His second place finishes were a great confidence booster for the Norwegian, following up two wins last weekend in Lake Louise, Canada.
"Two wins in Lake Louise, two second places here, I think it's pretty good," Svindal said. "I was again pretty lucky today. I again needed to work hard not to go out. Once again, I was going too fast."
Congratulations to both Vonn and Svindal on impressive weekends in their respective events and best of luck in their upcoming races.