COLORADO SPRINGS, CO (Sept. 23) – Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) was honored Saturday evening with the 2010 SportsWoman of the Year award at the U.S. Olympic Committee's (USOC) Olympic and Paralympic Assembly.
Unable to attend the ceremony due to the wedding of a childhood friend in Minnesota, Vonn taped an acceptance speech earlier in the month at the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Center of Excellence in Park City. The award was originally announced in late January.
"I'm so sorry I couldn't be there tonight," said Vonn. "I can't tell you how much I appreciate this award and how much I appreciate your support. I’m so excited to be a part of the Olympic community and to represent the Olympic values"
Veteran NBC Sportscaster Bob Costas delivered the keynote address in an event that also presented the Olympic Torch Award, Jack Kelly Fair Play Award and featured a tribute to 75th Anniversary of 1936 U.S. Olympic Team.
Vonn earned the USOC's most prestigious female honor for the second consecutive year on a Olympic season where she became the first American woman to win an Olympic gold medal in downhill. She then added a second medal with bronze in super G and went on to produce a record-breaking season on the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup tour.
"The 2010 Olympic season was incredible, but what made it so special is that I was able to share it with so many American fans," said Vonn. "It was amazing to see the support and excitement they showed for ski racing."
Her American record 11 World Cup wins set in 2010 propelled Vonn to a third consecutive overall title, third straight downhill title, second super G title and the season-long crown for super combined to close the season as the most successful alpine skier in American history.
Her performances earned also earned her ESPY awards for both "Best Female Athlete" and "Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete" that boosted Vonn into a major name in sports and popular culture. She went on to defend the top individual female ESPY honor the following year.
Vonn recently returned from a three-week training camp in Chile and will move to Europe next month to prepare for the 2012 Audi FIS Alpine World Cup season opener set for Oct. 22 in Soelden, Austria.