Lindsey Vonn fought heavy wind gusts to finish second in the Cortina downhill with Stacey Cook in sixth and Julia Mancuso ninth (Getty Images/AFP/Alberto Pizzoli)
CORTINA d'AMPEZZO, Italy (Jan. 14) - Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) fought gusting winds to finish second in the Olympia della Tofane downhill in Cortina. Stacey Cook (Mammoth, CA) was sixth and Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, CA) ninth as Italian Deniella Marighetti captured the first victory of her career. Vonn now leads the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup overall standings by 244 points and the downhill standings by 127.
Lindsey Vonn was second in the Cortina downhill with Stacey Cook sixth and Julia Mancuso ninth
Vonn now leads to World Cup overall standings by 244 over Austrian Marlies Schild and the downhill by 127 over Elisabeth Goergl of Austria
It was the ninth podium finish in Cortina for Vonn, and her sixth podium this season
Cook's sixth-place finish ties for her third-best career World Cup result
Italian Daniela Merighetti won for the first win of her career with Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany in second
Strong winds gusted throughout the race and were a major factor for all athletes
Mancuso is now sixth in the World Cup downhill standings with Cook 10th behind Vonn
QUOTES Lindsey Vonn I'm really happy with today's race. It was tough conditions out there. It was really windy and we had to ski well and also have a little bit of luck. It could have gone either way. It could have been a lot worse, so second place is a solid result.
The problem at the start was that the wind was swirling and I couldn't even see the first gate, so I was kind of laughing to myself. There's not much you can do when it's so windy, so you just have to try to ski your best. I thought I skied well. Unfortunately, it wasnt quite enough for the win today. Second place is a really solid result given the conditions.
It's always tough, whether you're leading overall or you're trailing and you're trying to catch up. For some reason, the overall is always on my mind. For me, the main focus is just to ski my best every day and try not to think about the points.
Stacey Cook It (the wind) was definitely was a factor, and I'm not really sure what side of it I was on. I know that I definitely had some wind over the first jump, and I wasn't sure how I was going to pull out of it. If it was any bigger, I think it would have taken me. But I made it through that, and I just tried to think of tucking and skiing well. That was the only thing I thought about the whole time, and I think it worked. I fell a little out of control at the bottom, which usually means you're going fast.
I don't really like to think at all about what's going on. My coach, the other day, said I was like a fine wine, getting better with age. I turned back to him and said, 'Yeah, I'ave always kind of been a late bloomer.' I think a lot of it is credit to the coaches for having confidence in me for so many years when I would have a fast training round and blow it on race day, and they still kept believing in me. All that belief comes through with a little bit of timing, if you start to believe in yourself. They definitely brought me on a big journey.