Lindsey Vonn
Getty Images

Lindsey Vonn sees embarrassment, but not for her, in bid to race against men

14 Comments

Lindsey Vonn said there are a lot of men that don’t want to see her entering a men’s World Cup race, one of her goals before retirement, in a wide-ranging “60 Minutes Sports” interview.

“I mean, I beat half of them when I train with them; they don’t want to be embarrassed,” Vonn said in an interview that aired Tuesday night. “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.”

Vonn has stuck to her goal of racing against men since 2012, but she’s yet to get the chance while also missing substantial time due to crash-related injuries the past four years. The International Ski Federation dismissed her request in November 2012, saying “that one gender is not entitled to participate in races of the other.”

Vonn is undeterred.

“The goal is definitely to make it to the next Olympics in South Korea in 2018, so that’s two more seasons, but I’m really hoping for three seasons, and I’ll tell you why,” Vonn said last spring. “It’s because, in my final season, I would like to race against the men in one race.”

Vonn also said in the “60 Minutes” interview that she still takes medication for depression.

“Sometimes it’s really hard,” she said. “I don’t want to get out of bed.”

But she has plenty of motivation to rehab the most painful injury of her career to get back to racing later this season.

“I lack self-confidence,” Vonn said. “Skiing is what makes me happy, and when I don’t ski, I have a hard time just being happy.

“I’m lonely. I’m really lonely. When I don’t have skiing, it’s hard.”

Vonn also discussed her life away from racing, including appearing in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and publishing a book in the offseason.

“I would prefer that people know me as being a skier, as being a very successful skier,” Vonn said. “Sometimes I feel like that line gets blurred, and I’m known for what I do outside of skiing.”

Such as dating Tiger Woods. Their nearly three-year relationship ended in spring 2015.

Even so, Vonn said she was “a little bit” surprised to not hear from Woods after breaking her right arm in a November training crash, which has kept her off snow for nearly two months.

“But I think he’s probably just focused on coming back,” Vonn said.

When Vonn does return to racing — she has said later this month, she hopes — eyes will be on her continued quest to break the World Cup career wins record of 86 held by Swede Ingemar Stenmark. Vonn, who averages about 10 wins per season when fully healthy, is at 76 wins.

“I can try to trick myself and pretend like it doesn’t mean everything to me, but it really does,” she said. “If I can break it, then I think that it solidifies me in the history of skiing. And that’s something that I want. I want people to remember my accomplishments, not that I was hurt all the time, but I won all the time.”

MORE: Vonn’s New Year’s resolution

USA Hockey to start reaching out to potential replacement players

Getty Images
Leave a comment

USA Hockey will begin reaching out to “alternate players” to determine their interest in playing for the U.S. at the women’s world championship next week amid a potential boycott by its national team.

The contact is taking place in the event a resolution cannot be reached between USA Hockey and the women’s national team in a wage dispute.

“It’s important for everyone to understand clearly that our objective is to have the players we named as the U.S. women’s national team be the ones that compete in the world championship,” said Dave Ogrean, executive director of USA Hockey, in a statement. “Productive conversations have taken place this week and are ongoing in our collective efforts to reach a resolution.”

The alternate players are in the professional NWHL and college, according to USA Today, a report that USA Hockey would not confirm.

U.S. captain Meghan Duggan has said every player in the U.S. national team player pool, plus under-18 national team players, committed to not playing at worlds unless the wage dispute is resolved.

“We are confident that they [potential replacement players] would choose not to play,” the U.S. players said in a statement.

The world championship tournament starts March 31 in Plymouth, Mich.

As of Thursday evening, no resolution has come between USA Hockey and its women’s national team. They met formally on Monday for more than 10 hours, with both sides calling it productive.

“We ask that they approve the original agreement that, the players believed, was acceptable to both parties after Monday’s meeting,” the players said in a statement. “Unless there is an agreement, the players remain resolved to bypass the defense of the world championship.”

Neither side has said when the next meeting will take place.

On Tuesday, USA Hockey said it postponed a pre-worlds camp that was to run through next Tuesday in Traverse City, Mich., and canceled a scheduled Friday exhibition against Finland.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: NHL asked for decision on Olympics by end of April

NHL asked for decision on Olympics by end of April

Getty Images
Leave a comment

International Ice Hockey Federation President Rene Fasel tells The Associated Press he needs to know by the end of April whether NHL players will be cleared to play in the South Korea Olympics next year.

NHL team owners have made it clear they don’t want to stop their season again for the Winter Games and put their stars at risk of injury. The reluctance has come up before and yet the NHL has participated in the Olympics since 1998. This time, however, there seems to be an impasse.

The head of the NHL Players Association, Donald Fehr, says the players want to participate and hopes the league will take advantage of the chance to market the game in Asia.

However, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly says without “material change to the current status quo, NHL players will not be participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics.”

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: 2018 Olympic hockey groups set