Lindsey Vonn: former Olympic gold medalist, turned race car driver? It almost happened, she revealed to Graham Bensinger

By Jason Duaine Hahn
October 08, 2020 03:38 PM
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Thanks to her need for speed, Lindsey Vonn fans almost got to see the Olympic gold medalist go from skiing down slopes to racing cars down tracks.

Vonn — who retired from professional skiing in 2019 — revealed she once considered becoming a Formula One driver, but was turned off when she was told she wouldn't be allowed to become pregnant for three years.

"I almost — I was thinking about switching, going to Formula One. Like, actually trying to be a racer, a driver," Vonn revealed in the latest episode of In Depth with Graham Bensinger. "But, I couldn't because they wanted me to commit, uh, what was it, 3 years? They're like, you can't get pregnant, you can't do anything."

"I'm like — I don't know if I really want to do that," she explained while driving Bensinger around Los Angeles in her car. "I'm like, okay, I guess I'm not doing that."

Vonn said the opportunity to race would have been something "very exciting" for her, and mentioned she could have pursued other options, like NASCAR.

But part of the allure of Formula One was how much their drivers make annually, and Vonn speculated that F1 star Lewis Hamilton likely earned more in a single year than "all of ski racing."

"Probably the salary of one racer is probably the total amount of money that ski racing has for their annual budget as a sport," she said while laughing.

"I bet [Lewis Hamilton] makes more money than all of ski racing combined," Vonn added. According to Forbes, Hamilton earns more than $40 million from his F1 contract a year and takes in millions more from endorsements.

During their drive, Vonn's fiancé, NHL star P.K. Subban, called to check in on how the interview was going and serenaded the two with a spontaneous song. Vonn and Subban got engaged in August 2019 after dating for just over a year.

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When asked by Bensinger if Vonn typically likes to drive fast, Subban said yes — though she does so "cautiously."

"Yes, she likes to drive on the edge," Subban responded. "But I will say this, Lindsey is very, very smart, she's cautious, she's not irresponsible, but she loves to go fast. Whenever she can go fast, it's throttle down."

Check out the full interview on the In Depth with Graham Bensinger Youtube channel.