Ski star Vonn dismay over Trump backlash

Los Angeles (AFP) –


American skiing star Lindsey Vonn voiced dismay on Tuesday over the backlash that has followed her remarks last week concerning the United States government and President Donald Trump.

In a lengthy post on Instagram, Vonn said she had been hurt by some of the responses she had received to comments made in an interview with CNN.

"My recent comments opened up my eyes as to how divided we are right now," Vonn wrote.

"It is hurtful to read comments where people are hoping I break my neck or that God is punishing me for being 'anti-Trump.'"

Vonn told CNN she would be proud to represent the United States at February's Olympics in Pyeongchang but did not see herself as a representative of the US government.

"Well, I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the president," Vonn told CNN.

"I want to represent our country well. I don't think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that."

Asked if she would attend any possible White House reception for the US Olympic team after the Games -- a common tradition -- Vonn replied: "Absolutely not."

Vonn said on Instagram on Tuesday she had grown alarmed at the way the US is perceived around the world.

"I am proud to be an American, and I want our country to continue to be a symbol of hope, compassion, inclusion and world unity," she wrote.

"My travels around the world have recently made clear that this is no longer how people view the United States."

Vonn, 33, is arguably the most well-known member of the US Winter Olympic team, having won four World Cup overall championships as well as an Olympic gold in the downhill at the 2010 Games. She missed the 2014 Games through injury.