Lindsey Vonn might be off the pace in the bid for the overall World Cup title, but the American has shown this week that she’s still skiing’s speed queen.
The 30-year-old, in her comeback season after a serious knee injury, followed up Wednesday’s victory in the downhill by beating super-G rival Anna Fenninger in thrilling style to pick up a second Crystal Globe at the World Cup finals in France.
It was Vonn’s record-equaling 19th career globe and her fifth in the discipline — while she clinched both speed categories in the same season for the fifth time.
“I think this year was up-and-down,” said Vonn, who has won eight races in downhill and super-G for 2014-15 after missing the Winter Olympics, extending her World Cup record to 67 victories.
“I didn’t have a chance to get in a lot of training because of my injuries. But when I have training and I have confidence, I ski like I did this week.”
Fenninger, the super-G Olympic and world champion, had trailed Vonn by eight points going into this week in Meribel but turned up the pressure by setting the quickest time Thursday of one minute 8.19 seconds.
Vonn, the 19th of 21 skiers out of the gates, smashed that as she came home in 1:07.70.
“Anna put a lot of pressure on me. I knew she was leading when I was at the top and I just skied as hard as I could,” Vonn said. “I was definitely on the limit, especially at the bottom. I just attacked like I had nothing to lose.”
Fenninger extended her lead in the battle for the overall World Cup crown to 32 points over second-placed Tina Maze, who was third in the super-G.
They will now focus on Saturday’s slalom and Sunday’s giant slalom as Fenninger seeks to defend her 2013-14 overall title.
The Austrian leads the giant slalom standings by 86 points from compatriot Eva Maria-Brem, while American Mikaela Shiffrin is front-runner to retain her slalom globe.
Vonn is third overall, 211 points behind Fenninger.
Meanwhile, Kjetil Jansrud was officially crowned a double speed champion after finishing second in the men’s super-G behind Canada’s Dustin Cook on Thursday.
The Norwegian had amassed an unassailable lead in the discipline last week, and Wednesday’s downhill victory boosted his hopes of overhauling Marcel Hirscher in the overall standings.
The Austrian, seeking a fourth successive overall title, leads by 34 points going into the weekend’s technical events.
Hirscher has already clinched the giant slalom globe ahead of Saturday’s race, and is second behind Germany’s Felix Neureuther as he seeks to defend his slalom title.
“Marcel is grabbing a lot of points right now and he could already wrap it up on Saturday, but I’ll just ski as fast as I can in the giant slalom and we’ll see how it goes,” Jansrud said.
Cook claimed the first World Cup race win of his career, and finished fifth in the super-G standings after a strong end to the season — his first podium came at the previous race in Norway just over a week ago.
“I’m definitely not used to this, maybe someone like Kjetil who wins a lot, but this is all new and all exciting for me and I couldn’t be happier. It’s unbelievable,” said the 26-year-old.
By: Gary Morley for CNN