March 22, 2018

In Pyeongchang, a historically diverse Winter Olympics

21 February 2018, 11:45 | Randolph Howard

What Canada did Tuesday at the Pyeongchang Olympics: Two more gold medals

Lacklustre Team Canada needs to find another gear for quarter-final against Finland

Lindsey Vonn Wins Bronze In Downhill At Pyeongyang Winter Olympics The U.S. skiing star won a bronze medal in what was likely the last Olympic downhill of her career. "I gave it all today, skied a great race", she said.

"It's hard to process it's my last Olympic downhill race".

Vonn finished.47 seconds behind the gold medalist, Italy's Sofia Goggia, and was in place for the silver until a surprisingly strong run by Norway's Raghild Mowinkel bumped Vonn into third place.

Austria's Stephanie Venier also had a race to forget, losing control of her skis as she pushed to shave vital hundredths of a second off and tumbled down the slope, a fate that also befell Italians Nadia Fanchini and Federica Brignone.

"Lindsey is a great skier - the greatest skier - a great person and a great woman", said Italy's Sofia Goggia, the gold medal-winner. I'm so proud to have competed with such fantastic girls. We help each other.

"I came here. with one goal: to beat Lindsey", Goggia said.

Glenwood Springs racer Alice McKennis had the race of her life, finishing fifth.

Vonn's racing helmet features the initials 'D.K.' and a heart in memory of grandfather Don Kildow, who died in November.

It was Choi Minjeong's second gold of the Games to go along with the one she claimed in the 1,500m while Shim Sukhee and Kim Alang also celebrated gold for a second time after helping South Korea to relay glory in Sochi.

"I knew I had a competitive time, but I didn't know if it would be enough for gold", Goggia said. "I wish this wasn't my last Olympics, but it is", Lindsey said (via ESPN), "so I'm trying to accept that and deal with the emotions of that and enjoy the ride". "I couldn't have done it much better than this, this was my best downhill ever". I know everyone expects a lot from me, and I expect even ... more of myself ... however there's only one thing I can guarantee; I will give everything I have tomorrow. "I'm going to win for him".

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Still, she said she would have raced the downhill if there was still a day off before the combined as scheduled. "It's so rewarding. Of course I would have liked a gold medal, but this is fantastic and I am so proud", she told NBC. "It's still hard to understand it when I'm standing here". But I've no regrets.

And the tears flowed again as the enormity of the occasion hit home - her final Olympic downhill race.

"It's sad", Vonn added. "It's my last downhill".

"I wish I could keep going", Vonn said.

"I love racing - love being in the starting gate with so much pressure that you feel suffocated". But my body just can't take another four years. "Of course, I would have loved a gold medal but, honestly, this is incredible and I'm so proud".

At the age of 33 there aren't too many downhills left for Vonn. She won both of those medals at the 2010 Vancouver Games, when she became the only American woman ever to have won gold in the Olympics' downhill.

Below are just a few of the photos that show just how insane downhill skiing is in action.

Now, if you were to take almost two minutes to finish the run, as the anonymous skier here did, you wouldn't have come close to experiencing the thrill of standing on the Olympic podium, as Vonn did on Wednesday.

And yet, while Mikaela Shiffrin and her resilient, responsive, 22-year-old body surged ahead to become the next American skiing icon, perhaps an all-time great, Vonn could have bailed.

Yes, for years now, Vonn has been the standard by which all other female ski racers are judged - and judge themselves. This year's United States team is the most diverse in Winter Olympic history, but it only includes 10 African-Americans and 11 Asian-Americans out of 244 athletes. In addition to having most of their teams banned from the games, athletes must compete as "Olympic Athletes From Russia", instead of just representing Russia. "I don't think that there are a lot of people now in our government that do that".

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