Tired Vonn says she is losing self belief

Sat Dec 15, 2012 3:04pm EST
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By Manuele Lang

VAL D'ISERE, France (Reuters) - Four-times overall World Cup winner Lindsey Vonn, dejected after crashing out of a downhill race for the first time in five years, said on Saturday she was tired and had lost some self belief.

In an interview with Reuters held after a World Cup super-giant slalom was canceled in the resort of Val D'Isere, the skier also elaborated on her disclosure to American magazine People this week that she had suffered bouts of depression.

The American ended up in the safety netting in the downhill, a discipline in which she is world and Olympic champion, on Friday for the first time since 2007.

"Things are a little bit tough," said Vonn. "I started the season well ... now I'm definitely feeling like the energy isn't there.

"It's becoming more and more difficult to ski the way I want to. With yesterday's crash and my near-crash in the training run, I'm losing self confidence," added the second most successful female skier of all-time ahead of Sunday's giant slalom in Courchevel, France.

Vonn began the season by controversially stating her desire to race against the men in Lake Louise, Alberta, and then spent a period in hospital with stomach problems.

The 28-year-old is now facing mounting opposition from Slovenia's Tina Maze and feeling the strain of competing in all five alpine skiing specialities.

Sunday's giant slalom could be her last race of the year before she returns home to the U.S. for Christmas.   Continued...