Vail’s Lindsey Vonn crashed during a super G race at the World Alpine Ski Championships Tuesday in Schladming, Austria and was airlifted by helicopter to a nearby hospital, according to the U.S. Ski Team.
According to U.S. Ski Team Medical Director Kyle Wilkens, Vonn suffered a torn ACL and MCL in her right knee and a lateral tibial plateau fracture. 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, Russia.
“Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) crashed during the opening day super G at the FIS Alpine Ski World Championships,” a U.S. Ski Team statement read. “Vonn had posted the fastest first interval and was having a strong run when she went down. She was immediately attended to by race medical officials and transported by helicopter, as is standard protocol, to a nearby hospital.”
Vonn, a Ski and Snowboard Club Vail product, had been enjoying a resurgence this season after taking three weeks off to recover from an intestinal infection that hospitalized her in Vail in November. Vonn won a downhill in Cortina and giant slalom in Maribor in recent weeks and now has the second most wins all-time on the women’s World Cup circuit with 59.
According to the Associated Press, “Vonn lost balance on her right leg while landing after a jump and appeared to have injured her right knee.”
The news agency also reported that Slovenia’s Tina Maze won the gold medal. Maze has a commanding lead in the hunt for the overall title that Vonn won last season.
The U.S. Ski Team reported Squaw Valley's Julia Mancuso collected her fifth career World Championships medal with a bronze. Switzerland's Lara Gut claimed the silver.
The race was reportedly delayed for more than three hours by fog and poor light conditions.
"I think that might've been one of the most difficult races I've ever been in," said Mancuso, a 2006 Olympic gold medalist. "It was a really long course and a lot of hurry up and wait. I didn't know I'd be so tired at the end of the run. Every time, no matter what kind of run, I know I could have a much better run. But to finish on the podium is kind of all you can ask for."