By Ann Schissler
(March 2015) For the most part, I’m pretty happy with who I am as a person. I’m blessed in many ways. I am secure, loved by my friends and family, in good health and just plain happy and enjoying life. But there is a part of me that completely envies Lindsey Vonn.
What an amazing feat she has just accomplished in her comeback year by capturing her 18th and 19th crystal globe trophies, which by the way, ties her with legendary Ingermar Stenmark of Sweden. I remember how in awe I was meeting Ingermar at the 1980 World Cup Finals in Lake Placid. I also remember he took the gold in the Giant slalom and Slalom events that year. Lindsey has earned her admittance into the elite club of record breaking ski racers. She claimed titles in both the Downhill and Super G events this year. Now there are many reasons to envy Lindsey. She’s gorgeous, wealthy, successful, lives her life doing something that she’s passionate about and travels all over the world doing it. But I don’t envy her celebrity status, or scrutiny from the masses or grueling training schedule or injuries. I envy her raw talent. Oh, how I wish I could ski like that. I love watching her use her ability to ski with utter abandon.
I can’t imagine suffering the pain and agony that she has endured and still have the courage and stamina to ski a Super-G course with the determination, skill and guts to leave all her competitors behind. And in ski racing, even .001 of a second can make all the difference.
So, I know I’ll never win or place or even compete in any World Cup events, but I’ll keep watching them. Because by doing so, not only are you entertained, but you get to see the mechanics of the sport. You can see the racer’s carving and holding edges in impossible conditions. And they are doing all this at impossible speeds. They do this for one reason only, to be the fastest that day. They do it to win and Lindsey Vonn is a winner, a legendary winner.