A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Up close, Lindsey Vonn's honey-colored hair, high cheekbones, and sprinkling of freckles give her the look of a Ralph Lauren model: all-American yet aristocratic. But seen from a distance--say, the length of a ski slope--Vonn resembles nothing so much as a rocket.
"If you work hard, it will pay off in the end," she says. It's a philosophy of life the athlete lives and skis by metaphorically and figuratively. Coming out of the 2006 Olympics, where a crash in practice tarnished her dreams of gold, Lindsey has trained harder and skied faster than ever before. She walked the podium a dozen times in 2007 and used that momentum to soar in 2008. The racer's intensified focus propelled her to win the 2008 Downhill World Cup and also fulfilled her childhood dream: a victory in the Overall World Cup. The standout season added up for the Vail, Colorado, local, earning her another title: "Most Winning American Speed Skier of all time."
With her husband Thomas at her side and two World Cup crystal globes in her bag, Lindsey comes across as being happier than ever before. And barely into her mid-20s, this rocket is just starting to take off. Look out Vancouver 2010, we have an incoming flying object and she's hungry for gold.