SOLDEU (Andorra) • Lindsey Vonn defied injury to grab some valuable World Cup points in a super-combined in the tiny principality situated between France and Spain in the Pyrenees mountains on Sunday.
The 31-year-old American skier suffered a hairline fracture of her left knee 24 hours earlier, when she fell heavily in a super-G race.
There were initial fears that her season could be over but, after waking up and feeling better, Vonn, wearing braces on both knees, clocked a fastest 57.04sec in a shortened speed leg of the combined.
After her run, she tweeted: "No one can ever call me a wimp."
She was back in action for the slalom later in the afternoon and, while she was unable to take the 77th World Cup win of her career, she still did enough to place 13th, giving her 20 points.
Her great rival for what would be a fifth overall World Cup title and first since 2012, Lara Gut of Switzerland, came away empty-handed after she straddled a gate halfway down the course.
"Drained my knee a few times and it's feeling a little better. Going to go up on the hill and see how it feels. Wish me luck!!" the American speed queen said on her Facebook page early on Sunday.
The first run was then delayed for 21/2 hours due to poor weather.
Vonn has a history of knee injuries, and there were fears her season could have been over when she fell heavily on Saturday and needed to be stretchered off the piste.
But, after X-rays showed that the injury was not ligament damage, Vonn said that she was determined to compete on Sunday.
The 31-year-old ended the day with an increased lead over Gut, having 1,235 points, 28 points more than her rival.
The race was won by Canadian Marie-Michele Gagnon with Switzerland's Wendy Holdener second and Anne-Sophie Barthet of France third.
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, THE GUARDIAN