Vonn dominates downhill in Germany

Nesha Starcevic
The Associated Press
Lindsey Vonn charges to victory Saturday in the World Cup downhill in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany.
Marco Trovati / AP | AP

GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany — Lindsey Vonn won a women’s downhill on a demanding course by a big margin on Saturday to extend her World Cup lead.

On a sunny day but with most of the Kandahar course in shade, Vonn made no obvious mistakes and finished 1.51 seconds ahead of Fabienne Suter of Switzerland.

Vonn raised her record to 38 downhill wins, the most by a woman in a specific discipline.

With her 76th World Cup win, Vonn closed the gap on the all-time record of 86 victories held by Ingemar Stenmark of Sweden. Vonn has won five of six downhill races this season and six of the last seven going back to last season.

“You can never be unsatisfied with a one-and-a-half second lead, it was a great day, I am pretty psyched,” the American said.

With her fifth downhill win, Vonn equaled her record from the 2011-12 season. She now has nine wins overall.

“Everything is coming together well and I have a lot of confidence,” Vonn said.

Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany, winner of two consecutive giant slalom races coming into Saturday’s event, was third, 1.57 seconds behind Vonn.

Only two of the first seven starters completed the course in tricky visibility, with shady and sunny sections. The race was interrupted several times to renew markings on the course.

“I skied this course a few times now and I think I had an advantage in that regard.” Vonn said. “I knew exactly where I had to push the line and where I had to give extra direction to make sure I was safe in some sections and to take speed to the finish line. There were a lot of tactics involved.”

“It was definitely pretty difficult to find the right line, to find where you could attack and where you couldn’t,” said Vonn, who covered the 2,740-meter course in one minute, 40.80 seconds.

Larisa Yurkiw of Canada was fourth, with another American, Laurenne Ross, fifth. Last season’s winner, Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein, was sixth.

Vonn increased her overall season lead over Lara Gut of Switzerland to 127 points.

Gut made a mistake and nearly missed a gate to finish 14th. Vonn is 172 points clear of Yurkiw in downhill standings.

A super-G is scheduled for Sunday.