Recovering from injuries, combined with weather delays, can occasionally leave our favourite athletes with too much time on their hands, apparently, and social media has given them an opportunity to share their thoughts with large audiences of people who have too much time on their hands, for various and sundry reasons.
Lindsey Vonn, the skier that appears to be the only credible threat to Ingemar Stenmark’s 86 World Cup victories, was set to make what feels like her 86th comeback from a seemingly endless string of injury setbacks, expressed her thoughts in the form of a wish to compete against male skiers in downhill racing.
If it were put to a vote, we would heartily say yes to the idea, because gravity is not influenced in any way by gender.
Not everyone shares our view, however, as 1999 World Cup champion Alexandra Meissnitzer of Austria, now a commentator for Austrian television, expressed the opinion that if Vonn were to get hurt competing in a FIS sanctioned race agasint men, it would somehow be worse than the other injuries with which Vonn has had to deal.
There is precedent for Vonn’s proposal.
In 1973, Aussie tennis legend and then number one ranked Margaret Court lost a match to former Wimbledon champion and self-promoter Bobby Riggs. She lost convincingly, 6 – 2, 6 – 1, which is difficult to envision, since in a follow-up with Riggs against Billie Jean King, the outcome was vastly different.
For her part, Vonn was quoted as saying she had no chance to win in a race against men, although she regularly runs against them in training.
Which begs the question: If you have no chance to win Lindsey, why then?