Lindsey Vonn Requests Permission to Ski vs. Men at 2018 World Cup

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 27, 2017

United States' Lindsey Vonn gets to the finish area after completing an alpine ski, women's World Cup super-G, in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy, Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017. (AP Photo/Alessandro Trovati)
Alessandro Trovati/Associated Press

The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association will go in front of the International Ski Federation to argue for allowing Lindsey Vonn to compete against men at an FIS World Cup event, ESPN.com's Wayne Drehs reported.

In June, FIS race director Atle Skaardal expressed skepticism that the federation would grant the request, per USA Today's Scott Gleeson:

"It will be a very difficult challenge to find a reasonable way of doing this because one point that everyone is underestimating is that we need to have equal rights for everyone. So if the ladies are allowed to race with the men, then also the men need to be authorized to ski with the ladies, and I'm not sure this is a direction we want to go. I see it as a very difficult topic.... I'm confident that everyone will think this through."

Vonn earned gold and bronze medals at the 2010 Winter Olympics as well as seven medals—including two golds—through the years at the Alpine World Ski Championships. With 77 wins on the World Cup circuit, she also trails Ingemar Stenmark by nine victories for the all-time mark.

In a January interview with the Denver Post's John Meyer, Vonn explained she sees competing against men as a symbolic achievement.

"I know I'm not going to win, but I would like to at least have the opportunity to try," she said. "I think I've won enough World Cups where I should have enough respect within the industry to be able to have that opportunity."

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The FIS previously denied Vonn the chance to compete on the men's circuit in November 2012. The 32-year-old will have a little more urgency behind her renewed push, since she plans to retire during the 2018-19 racing season.