Vonn back on top of the world at Lake Louise

Sat Dec 6, 2014 5:02pm EST
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By Manuele Lang

LAKE LOUISE, Alberta, (Reuters) - It only took two races after a year’s injury break for Lindsey Vonn to return to the top.

The most successful active skier, forced out of action for 349 days after a shin fracture and two knee operations, clinched her 60th World Cup victory in the downhill at her favorite piste of Lake Louise on Saturday.

“I fought so hard to be back where I am, at the top of the podium. It means the world to me, it’s just unbelievable”, she said. “It’s like a dream day.”

Eighth on Friday for her return to the circuit, Vonn led the first-ever clean sweep of World Cup podium places for the U.S. Ski Team, beating compatriots Stacey Cook and Julia Mancuso by 0.49 and 0.57 seconds respectively.

It was the American’s 15th win in the Alberta resort sometimes dubbed Lake Lindsey and her 30th downhill laurels.

Vonn’s last World Cup victory was on Jan. 21, 2013 in a giant slalom in Maribor and she is now only two wins short of the all-time record of 62 held by Austria’s Annemarie Moser-Proell.

“I never felt sidelined, I was supported by my friends, my family and my team. I always knew I could do it. I had confidence in myself,” Vonn said.

In the men’s Super-G in Beaver Creek, Austria’s Hannes Reichelt stopped Norway’s Kjetil Jansrud from becoming the first skier to win all four speed events in the North-American phase of the season.   Continued...

Dec 6, 2014; Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada; Lindsey Vonn of the USA competes during the women's downhill in the FIS alpine skiing World Cup at Lake Louise Ski Resort. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports