Overall champ Vonn wins super-G, too

Updated: March 12, 2009, 6:58 PM ET
Associated Press

ARE, Sweden -- Lindsey Vonn seems to make history every time she wins -- and she's doing that often.

Vonn won the super-G season finale at the World Cup finals Thursday, becoming the first American woman to capture the championship title in the discipline.

"The confidence just keeps building and building in race after race," she said. "I trust myself, I trust my ability and that's what allow me to ski fast and aggressively."

Vonn earned her third crystal globe this season, tying the U.S. record set by Phil Mahre in 1982.

[+] EnlargeLindsey Vonn
Oliver Morin/AFP/Getty ImagesLindsey Vonn is the first American woman to win the World Cup super-G discipline title.

The 24-year-old Vonn finished the Olympia course in 1 minute, 20.63 seconds. A day earlier, she clinched the World Cup overall title for the second straight year by winning downhill.

"I was hoping so much that I could win today and get the super-G globe, no American female has ever done that," Vonn said. "I'm so, so happy. What a week it's been so far."

Nadia Fanchini of Italy finished runner-up in 1:20.71 and was second in the final super-G standings.

This was Vonn's ninth World Cup win this winter, setting another U.S. record for the most World Cup wins in one season -- male or female.

She leads all American women with two overall titles, 22 career wins and 47 podium finishes. Her consecutive downhill titles matched Picabo Street in 1995-96.

It marked her fourth straight World Cup super-G win, following her victory at the World Championships last month at Val d'Isere, France.

"To have five back-to-back in the super-G is more than I ever thought was possible," Vonn said. "It's incredible. Going into the season I did not start off so strong in super-G, but later in the season I finally picked up a rhythm and I stuck with it. It's been a crazy season for me. I'm really happy."

Vonn topped the final super-G standings with 461 points, followed by Fanchini at 416.

In the overall standings, Vonn increased her lead to 1,788 points. Germany's Maria Riesch, who was 0.24 behind in third place, stayed in second place overall with 1,359 points.

Vonn posted the fastest split times all the way down.

"I was pretty nervous at the start," said Vonn, who resides in Park City, Utah. "I think I skied the top really well. I tried to ski the same way that I've been skiing in the last few races. Just full attack but still smart skiing.

"After I went off the first jump, I knew that I was going pretty fast because I got really good air. I got a little bit too aggressive on the bottom, went a little bit too inside and got kind of kicked by a bump and almost crashed. But I was able to hold it together and make it to the finish. Then seeing the scoreboard ... it was a dream come true."

The women's events include a slalom on Friday. Riesch has already secured the season title in that discipline. Vonn is second in the standings, and Sarka Zahrobska of the Czech Republic and Tanja Poutiainen of Finland are the only skiers who can overtake the American.

"I have already won the overall, so I'm just go out there and try to ski the best race that I can and still have fun," Vonn said. "Maria has already won the [slalom] title. That's nothing really that I can do, just hang to second place."


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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