4 Nov 2012

Woman ski champion blocked from racing men

4:10 pm on 4 November 2012

The International Ski Federation has ruled that the American Lindsey Vonn will not be allowed to enter the men's downhill competition at Lake Louise in Canada later this month.

Vonn, the second most successful woman skier in the history of the sport, made headlines before the start of the season when she wrote to the Federation asking to be allowed into the men's race at the Canadian resort on November 24.

In its ruling the Federation stated that one gender is not entitled to participate in races of the other and exceptions will not be made.

The news came as a disappointment to Alpine Canada president Max Gartner whos says he

saw it as a great opportunity to raise the profile of the sport by attracting interest from people who do not normally follow ski racing, particularly in North America.

The world and Olympic champion could still apply to ski down the piste as a forerunner, a skier who opens the course for the competitors, which would allow her to test herself against the men.

If she did this, however, she would not be allowed to participate in the women's event in Lake Louise six days later.