Vail’s ‘stoked’ about Vonn’s gold |

Vail’s ‘stoked’ about Vonn’s gold

Lauren Glendenning
Vail, CO Colorado
Lindsey Vonn of the United States, the gold medal winner, signs autographs after winning the Women's downhill at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Whistler, British Columbia, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Gero Breloer)

VAIL – Vail locals were thrilled Wednesday when they learned that hometown girl Lindsey Vonn won gold in the women’s downhill race at Whistler.

“I’m glad to have a local win,” said Ryan McCombs, of Minturn. “I’ve seen her training videos – she trains like a mad man.”

Locals said there’s been a lot of pressure on Vonn to win big in these Olympic Games – she’s become the most dominant women skier in the World Cup circuit, and arguably one of the best American female skiers in the history of the sport. She became the first American woman to win the downhill race in the Winter Olympics Wednesday.

As word spread that Vonn won, locals hanging out at Garfinkel’s in Lionshead reacted to the news.

“I think it’s pretty rad,” said Maggie Jordan, of Vail. “That’s awesome.”

Mark Lennon, of Vail, said he knew Vonn would win because of all the media hype surrounding Vonn’s recent shin injury.

The media hype added a lot of pressure to Vonn’s race, said Curtis Cook, of Edwards. Even through the pressure, though, he said Vonn did what everyone expected her to do – win.

“I’m glad she pulled it out and didn’t complain – she sucked (the pain) up,” Cook said.

Kevin Zaiontz, of Vail, said people were wondering if Vonn would even compete, let alone win a medal.

“I’m super stoked – she has a busted shin and she pulled it off,” Zaiontz said. “That’s awesome, that’s incredible.”

Clemens Jensen, from Denmark, said there’s so much more emphasis on winning at the Olympics because they happen every four years, rather than World Cup races that happen every year. The win is big for the United States, he said.

Dan Macy, of Breckenridge, is just happy an American won.

“It’s cool that someone from the U.S. got gold,” Macy said.

With one gold medal under her belt, and potentially more to come in the next few days, McCombs is looking for Vonn to expand her horizons.

“I’d like to see her get into curling next year,” he joked.

Community Editor Lauren Glendenning can be reached at 970-748-2983 or

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