A Vonn Farewell


Doug Mills/The New York Times

Lindsey Vonn announced her retirement from skiing last week on Instagram in a post that read: “I have always pushed the limits of ski racing and it has allowed me to have amazing success but also dramatic crashes. My body is broken beyond repair and it isn’t letting me have the final season I dreamed of. My body is screaming at me to STOP and it’s time for me to listen”.

Vonn leaves the sport as the greatest female ski racer in history, but for this warrior who famously battled back time and time again from devastating injuries, this early exit not the ending she envisioned. When Vonn said this would be her final season, there was one more record she planned to break before she said farewell — most World Cup wins held by Ingemar Stenmark. And though that didn’t happen, he was there at finish line at her last race today to congratulate her on a storied career.

Coincidentally, another snow sport superstar, Chloe Kim, also announced she was retiring last week, but under polar opposite circumstances. The 2018 Gold Medalist in the Women’s Halfpipe, Kim was the face of the Pyeongchang Games last February. At 17 years old, not only did she live up to the Olympic hype and pressure to become the youngest woman to win a gold medal in the halfpipe, but she did it with unprecedented flair in a run that featured two back-to-back 1080-degree spins — a combination no other woman has ever done in a competition.
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Lindsey Vonn: The Climb


“Lindsay Vonn: The Climb” aired on NBC today, remarkably timed with her 64th World Cup victory in the Giant Slalom in St. Moritz. This documentary follows her journey back from two devastating crashes, two knee surgeries, and highlights her relentless determination to get back on skis and on top of the podium. This makes all the more impressive her 63rd World Cup victory on Monday, which made her the winningest woman in ski racing history.

Produced by Red Bull Media House, in association with NFL Films and NBC Olympics, the film features never-before-seen footage and gives viewers an inside look at the past 22 months of Vonn’s life, from the hard-to-watch crashes to the operating room to the grueling rehab. With extraordinary access, there is even quite a lot of screentime with boyfriend Tiger Woods, who together with she shares the story of her fight to come back.

Says Vonn, “The last two years have been filled with some of the biggest ups and downs of my career, and I’m excited to share this story with my fans. This is the most inside look I’ve ever given to my world, and I hope it inspires others who are going through challenges to keep getting back up when they are down.” The next stop is the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Vail and Beaver Creek February 2-15, where Vonn will be competing in her hometown, providing her story with even more great sports drama.

Encore presentations of “Lindsey Vonn: The Climb” will air on NBC beginning in February and will be available digitally on Red Bull TV starting January 28.