Vail’s Lindsey Vonn crashed near the bottom of a World Cup super-G course in Soldeu-El Tarter, Andora on Saturday, leaving the mountain on a sled for further medical evaluation.
Tough, snowy and windy conditions forced a three-hour delay and course officials to lower the start.
Vonn, a pre-race favorate, slid out of the course, crashing near the bottom, and was taken off the hill on a sled by ski patrol. Her injuries are being evaluated, according to the U.S. Ski Team. The Associated Press is reporting Vonn injured her left knee.
The Olympic downhill and world champion still holds the overall World Cup lead by eight points over Switzerland’s Lara Gut, who finished 16th in the race won by Federica Brignone of Italy. Bend, Oregon’s Laurenne Ross finished second.
“Got caught in the soft snow today and crashed pretty hard,” Vonn wrote on Facebook. “X-rays showed I have a hairline fracture in my left knee and will get an MRI Monday. I will wait and see how I feel tomorrow [Sunday] to decide if I can race. Will keep u updated. Thx for all of the support and well wishes. Means a lot. Also congrats to my teammate @lalalaurenne on 2nd place today!”
Ross, who has been on a roll this season with five straight top-10 finishes, benefited from an early start position before heavy snow started falling.
“It’s been coming and my skiing has been improving. I got on the lucky side of things today and I took advantage on it,” Ross said. “I’m really happy with it. It’s an outdoor sport, it’s very rarely perfectly fair … but that’s ski racing.”
Eagle-Vail’s Mikaela Shiffrin wound up 29th, cracking into the points for the second time in only her second World Cup super-G. For Shiffrin, a tech specialist and Olympic champion in slalom, it was her first speed event back after a knee injury in December.
Next up, the women take on Sunday’s alpine combined, which consists of one run of super-G and one run of slalom. It’s an event Shiffrin should excel in if she can turn in a decent result in the speed event and dominate the slalom.