ARE, Sweden — Add one more — final — comeback to Lindsey Vonn’s list of career accomplishments.
a few days after crashing in super-G — a fall of which knocked the wind out of her in addition to left her using a black eye in addition to a bruised rib — in addition to three months after tearing a ligament in her left knee, Vonn won the bronze medal within the globe championship downhill Sunday within the final race of her career.
“I’m literally tapped out — I can’t cry anymore,” Vonn said. “I want to cry, nevertheless of which’s dry. of which’s not an easy thing to feel your bones hitting together in addition to continue to push through of which.”
She continued: “Of course I’m sore. Even before the crash, I was sore. So I’m just sore on top of sore. My neck will be killing me. nevertheless at the end of the day, no one cares if my neck hurts. They only care if I win.”
Vonn had been planning on waiting until December to retire, nevertheless she moved up her plans because of persistent pain in both of her surgically repaired knees. Then came the super-G crash, when she straddled a gate in midair, flew face first down the mountain in addition to slammed into the safety nets.
“She has been business as usual This kind of whole week, saying, ‘I’m racing to win,’” said Karin Kildow, Vonn’s sister. “I was like, ‘Just maybe make of which down in addition to maybe stand up.’ nevertheless she was like, ‘No, I’m going full out.’ She was definitely within the mind-set to push of which, in addition to she definitely did.”
of which will be a medal of which brings Vonn full circle. Her two silvers at the 2007 worlds on the same course in Sweden were the first two major championship medals of her career.
“I was weighing in my mind the risk of putting of which all out there, crashing in addition to getting injured again, as opposed to finishing where I wanted to,” Vonn said. “of which was an internal battle.”
As soon as she left the finish area, Vonn embraced the Swedish great Ingemar Stenmark, the only skier to have won more World Cup races than she did, 86 to 82.
“I basically begged him to come here, via text, in all caps, many exclamation points,” Vonn said. “He’s an icon in addition to a legend in our sport, in addition to he doesn’t definitely like the spotlight, nevertheless he deserves to have of which. I was just so grateful of which he was there. Honestly, of which’s a perfect ending to my career.”
The third skier on the course, Vonn had a big smile on her face when she came down with the fastest run to of which point. She waved in addition to bowed to the crowd.
Eventually, Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia beat Vonn in addition to took gold, defending her title by the 2017 worlds. Stuhec finished 0.23 of a second ahead of the silver medalist, Corinne Suter of Switzerland, in addition to 0.49 ahead of Vonn.
“Not many were counting on her to get the medal in her last race, which makes of which even more special,” Stuhec said of Vonn. “She has won everything.”
Vonn became the first female skier to win medals at six world championships. This kind of was also her fifth downhill medal at a world meet, matching the record established by Annemarie Moser-Proell in addition to Christel Cranz.
“Thank You Lindsey: Forever A Star,” read one sign positioned by the side of the course.
Four United States flags were within the grandstand when Vonn came down, in addition to there were quite a few cheers when she commenced her run wearing a suit with blue-in addition to-yellow trim — Sweden’s colors — to honor Stenmark.
“She definitely deserves This kind of send-off by her great career,” said Eleanor Bodin, a 21-year-old fan by Sweden who was holding up a sign saying “Thank You Lindsey.”
“She has been my favorite skier since 2008, when I saw her winning on television,” Bodin said. “I was a little girl sitting on the sofa. I just thought, What a great skier in addition to inspiration.”
At 34, Vonn eclipsed her own record by two years ago for oldest woman to win a medal at a world meet.
Fog in addition to wind led organizers to shorten the course to the second reserve start, which favored Vonn because of which reduced the strain on her knees.
at This kind of point she can finally let her body heal in addition to can move onto the next phase of her life — possibly acting, having children, starting a business.
“I’m looking forward to just chilling out a bit in addition to recovering everything, including my mind,” Vonn said. “of which’s been a lot to process.
“The nice thing will be of which, within the real world, I’m actually pretty young. I have felt definitely old for a long time, because I’m racing with girls of which are, like, 15 years younger than me. So at This kind of point, within the real world, I’m normal. Thirty will be the brand new 20, so I’m super young. I’ve got a lot to look forward to.”