KUSA - The next five days will bring the fastest men and women on skis to Aspen for the FIS World Cup finals.
Racing kicked off the with the downhill on Wednesday, bringing speed events back to Aspen for the first time in 20 years.
During the downhill, fans packed the grandstand, overflowing onto the downhill course finish area with more than 3,000 fans at the finish and even more along the course.
Team USA's Travis Ganong nabbed the best spot for America with a 17th place finish.
Team USA women had six racers in a field of about 20 international racers. Lindsey Vonn had the best finish for the U.S, grabbing second in the downhill after crashing at the finish and getting stuck in the safety padding.
“I was like a taco; I was wrapped up there real tight like burrito style and I was like 'I can’t breathe, I can’t move; someone has to come help me get out of here real fast' cause it was like compressing me,” Vonn said of the crash.
Despite the crash, it was Vonn’s first World Cup podium in Aspen after just missing the mark in past years.
"Of course I would have loved to win the downhill, but life is not perfect,” Vonn said.
Slovenia’s Ilka Stuhec won the women's downhill. On the men's side, it was Italy’s Dominik Paris who took first.
Vonn will race again Thursday in the Super G. On Saturday and Sunday, Mikaela Shiffrin will race slalom and giant slalom, likely claiming the World Cup overall title.
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