"I guess it wasn't a well-kept secret but yes, I am dating Tiger Woods," says the Olympic skier

By Elizabeth Leonard
March 18, 2013 01:15 PM
Courtesy Tiger Woods & Lindsey Vonn

After staying mum for months about a rumored romance, Tiger Woods and Lindsey Vonn are publicly stepping out as a couple.

In statements released simultaneously on Woods’s official website and Vonn’s Facebook page Monday afternoon, the athletic powerhouse duo confirmed their burgeoning relationship and posted a photo of themselves together.

“I guess it wasn’t a well-kept secret but yes, I am dating Tiger Woods. Our relationship evolved from a friendship into something more over these past few months and it has made me very happy,” says the Olympic skier, 28.

“I don’t plan on addressing this further as I would like to keep that part of my life between us, my family and close friends.”

Similarly, writes Woods, 37: “Something nice that’s happened off the course was meeting Lindsey Vonn. Lindsey and I have been friends for some time, but over the last few months we have become very close and are now dating.”

“We thank you for your support and for respecting our privacy. We want to continue our relationship, privately, as an ordinary couple and continue to compete as athletes.”

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Rumors of a relationship heated up early last month when Woods sent his private jet to fly Vonn home to Vail, Colo., after a crash at the Alpine World Championships in Austria left her with torn ligaments in her right knee and a fractured shin.

Since then, the pair has only grown closer, spending time together in Vai, where Vonn is recuperating from surgery, and most recently, in Florida aboard Woods’s yacht.

“Tiger and Lindsey have been friends for a while, and nothing started out romantically at all,” a source close to Woods tells PEOPLE. “But they really have a lot in common and got closer and closer.”

Woods made international headlines in 2009 when he was linked to dozens of women while still married to Elin Nordegren. Their divorce became final in August 2010.

The most decorated skier in U.S. history with an eye on the Winter Olympics, Vonn announced her split from husband of four years, Thomas Vonn, in November 2011.

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