Skiing: Olympic champ Lindsey Vonn seriously injured
LINDSEY Vonn suffered a serious knee injury and has been ruled out for the rest of the season after crashing on the opening day of the World Championships in Schladming, Austria.
The American superstar skiier was airlifted to hospital after falling midway through her Super-G race and suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in her right knee, plus a lateral tibial plateau fracture, according to US Ski Team medical director Kyle Wilkens.
A statement on the US Ski Team’s official website confirmed: “She will be out for the remainder of this season but is expected to return to racing for the 2013-14 Audi FIS World Cup season and the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.”
Yesterday’s opening World Championship race had been delayed by almost four hours due to fog. Officials had then struggled to get the event started due to fading light on the course.
Vonn lost her balance after landing from a jump, landing on her right knee before flipping over and crashing through a gate. She was treated on the course for 12 minutes before being airlifted to hospital.
Vonn was trailing the eventual winner, Tina Maze of Slovenia, by 0.12 seconds at the time of her crash. Switzerland’s Lara Gut finished in second with Vonn’s compatriot Julie Mancuso third. After the crash, pre-race favourites Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany and Austrian Anna Fenninger also failed to complete the course. Her injury is the latest setback for Vonn, 28, the reigning Olympic champion and four-time overall World Cup winner, who had missed several weeks of the season with an intestinal illness in November.
At the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin she suffered a crash in downhill training, but came back to compete in four of her five scheduled events, although she failed to recover sufficiently to win a medal. The high-profile Vonn finally won her Olympic title in Vancouver, where she claimed downhill gold ahead of Mancuso, while she also won a bronze medal in the women’s Super-G.
In spite of the controversy yesterday, the podium was a prestigious one, with Maze winning in one minute 35.39 seconds ahead of two event specialists and former medallists.
Gut, who won two silver medals in Val d’Isere in 2009, was second, 0.38sec behind, a great reward for the talented Swiss after she spent the whole of 2010 off through injury.
Mancuso was third, 0.52sec adrift, for her eighth medal at either the worlds or the Olympics. “I’m really sorry for Lindsey who took a too direct line. I regret her dreadful crash,” said Maze, who watched in horror as her rival fell. While Vonn was taken by helicopter to hospital in Salzburg, Maze, who clocked 1:35.39, was left to enjoy the second world title of her career after the giant slalom two years ago in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
“First day, first gold, I’m excited,” said the Slovenian, who will take part in all five disciplines in the coming fortnight.
Great Britain’s Chemmy Alcott finished 24th in a time of 1:38.18.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Wednesday 22 May 2013
Temperature: 3 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 5 C to 11 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: North west