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Who is Lindsey Vonn?

Who is Lindsey Vonn?

Get to know the 2010 Olympic downhill champion

Ski Beginnings 

Born Oct. 18, 1984 in St. Paul, Minn. as Lindsey Kildow. She started skiing at 2, with encouragement from her father, Alan Kildow, who was a competitive skier before blowing out his knee. At 11, she moved to Vail, Colo. to practice on bigger hills. 

When Vonn was 10, she met Picabo Street, who went on to win the 1998 Olympic super-G gold medal. Street inspired Vonn to start training harder. Vonn even framed her picture with Street in her bedroom.

The bond between Lindsey Vonn and Picabo Street

Lindsey Vonn first met 1998 Olympic super-G champion Picabo Street at age 10

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Major Competitions/Medals 

Vonn was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s Alpine team when she made her Olympic debut in 2002 at 17. She finished sixth in combined. No other U.S. female Alpine skier had a better result.

Four years later, she was helicoptered to a hospital after a serious crash in downhill training at the 2006 Torino Games. Showing her toughness, she returned to the slopes days later and finished eighth in downhill. 

Vonn won her first two Olympic medals at the 2010 Vancouver Games. She became the first U.S. woman to win an Olympic downhill gold medal. She also claimed bronze in super-G. 

Watch Lindsey Vonn win all of her Olympic medals

Vonn has three Olympic medals, including the 2010 Olympic downhill gold medal

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A right knee injury forced Vonn to miss the 2014 Olympics. Instead she served as an Olympic correspondent for NBC.

Why Lindsey Vonn missed the 2014 Sochi Olympics

Vonn did not have the opportunity to try to defend her 2010 Olympic downhill gold medal

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Vonn claimed both of her world championship titles in 2009, in downhill and super-G. She became the first U.S. woman to win a super-G world championship. 

Breakout Moment

Vonn claimed the first World Cup victory of her career in Lake Louise, Alberta on Dec. 2, 2014. She has since won 17 more World Cup races in Lake Louise. She often calls Lake Louise her favorite course, and it is even nicknamed “Lake Lindsey.” She has posted #ILoveLakeLouise on social media multiple times:

Records Held 

Vonn has won more World Cup races than any other woman. Now she is targeting the record held by Sweden’s Ingemar Stenmark.


Vonn is a big fan of animals.

She has three dogs: Lucy, Leo and Bear. Fans can keep up with the Vonn dogs by following vonndogs on Instagram.

She has also earned two cows, Olympe and Winnie, by winning World Cup races in Val d’Isere, France. Olympe gave birth to two more cows, and Vonn now owns three generation of cows. She keeps them in Kirchberg, Austria, where she often trains.

Pet cow? Photos of the craziest ski prizes

The world’s best Alpine skiers collect crazy prizes, from reindeer to livestock

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Top Quotes 

Vonn has often said that she would like the opportunity to race against men. 

“I mean, I beat half of them when I train with them; they don’t want to be embarrassed,” Vonn said to “60 Minutes Sports” in a 2017 interview. “I’m not going to beat all of them, I can assure you that, but I at least want a chance to see what my skiing is capable of against the best.”

Olympic Experience

2010: Downhill gold medal, super-G bronze medal
2006: No medals
2002: No medals

Off the mountain 

Vonn has become one of the most visible Winter Olympians off the slopes. She wrote a health and lifestyle book, “Strong Is the New Beautiful.” She posed in Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue, and even did pull-ups wearing nothing but body paint:

She can often be found spending time with the biggest names in sports, including Tom Brady, Roger Federer and Lewis Hamilton. She also had a three-year relationship with Tiger Woods.

She speaks fluent German, which she calls the “language of ski racing.”

Social Media

Facebook: LindseyVonnUSA 
Twitter: @lindseyvonn 
Instagram: lindseyvonn 

Alpine Skiing

Get to know your favorite Alpine skiers

Lara Gut | Marcel Hirscher | Ted Ligety | Julia Mancuso | Steven Nyman | Laurenne Ross | Mikaela Shiffrin | Lindsey Vonn | Jacqueline Wiles

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