Lindsey Vonn got off to a dominant start in her quest to win five gold medals at the 2010 Winter Olympics by blitzing the opposition to triumph in the women's downhill.
Vonn became the first female US skier to take gold in the event and held a victory margin of 0.56 seconds over compatriot Julia Mancuso in second.
Austria's Elisabeth Goergl took bronze as numerous competitors, including fancied Swede Anja Paerson, failed to make it to the bottom of the challenging Whistler
The performance was even more impressive as there were doubts that Vonn would be able to compete at full strength after recently injuring a shin in her preparations for Vancouver.
According to the Press Association, she said: "I gave up everything for this. It's tough when you have an injury - you have to stay on top and do whatever you can to fight back. It's so painful to ski and it's a tough course to ski down, but I did and it's awesome.
"I came here and got what I wanted - a gold medal. It's definitely a huge relief that I finally did it. I had a lot of ups and downs in my career and to be standing at the finish like this is amazing."
Vonn's next event in her gold medal challenge will be the super-combined, consisting of runs in both the downhill and the slalom.
Written by Chris Smith