Lindsey Vonn in Austria Erich Spiess/Red Bull Photofiles

Lindsey Vonn’s careful preparations for the opening slalom event of the FIS season paid off as she finished runner-up to close friend Maria Riesch in Levi, Finland.

Lindsey had been putting in the hours in similar conditions to those she expected to encounter in Levi at her home resort of Vail, Colorado ahead of the season opener and it almost led to a second consecutive Vonn victory at the Finnish resort.

After recording a time of 54.14 seconds in her first run, which was narrowly behind Riesch’s effort of 53.92 seconds, Vonn closed the gap in her second run by finishing 0.13 seconds better than her German rival.

It wasn’t quite enough to wrestle victory away from Riesch though, who prevailed by just eight tenths of a second, but Vonn was anything but downcast after comfortably achieving her pre-race target.

“I’m definitely happy about this race,” Vonn said. “My goal today was trying to get to the top five so this is a really good result for me."

And the 25-year-old had nothing but praise for the conditions in Levi and for her new skis.

“The snow and course were perfect and the lights were nice also, so it was really fun to race here tonight”, Vonn revealed. “We did a lot of testing in the summer and I´m really happy about my skis now.”

Find out more and keep in touch with Lindsey's progress this season at her official web site.

Overall results
1) Maria Reisch (Germany) 1:48.71
2) Lindsey Vonn (USA) 1:48.79
3) Tanja Poutiainen (Finland) 1:49.87
4) Susanne Riesch (Germany) 1:50.04
5) Michaela Kirchgasser (Austria) 1:50.32


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