What is it with Olympics-caliber skiers from Vail and knee injuries? Mere weeks after Lindsey Vonn announced that a knee injury would prevent her from competing at the Sochi games, whose opening ceremony takes place tomorrow, Heidi Kloser, a moguls skier who was thought to have a good chance for a medal, wiped out during a run today, hurting her knee in the process. And at this writing, the injury seems serious enough to keep her off the slopes. We've got a photo plus videos, including one posted by Kloser herself that juxtaposes exciting runs with crashes.
Here's a photo tweeted by the Colorado Springs Gazette showing Kloser being taken off the Sochi course:
— The Gazette (@csgazette) February 6, 2014
Kloser has reportedly had an MRI on her knee courtesy of Dr. Tom Hackett, who's both the U.S. Olympic Team's physician and a surgeon at The Steadman Clinic in Vail, so she's clearly in good hands. But given that she qualified first among thirty moguls skiers competing at Sochi, the mishap happened at a very inopportune time.
Not that Kloser is afraid of face-planting. The following video, posted on her YouTube account, gives equal billing to highlights and crashes from last year.
Earlier, as part of our post focusing on the twenty Coloradans on the U.S. Olympic team this year, we shared another of Kloser's video, this one showing her running the Sochi bumps:
And here's the Kloser profile from the U.S. Olympics website:
Sport: Freestyle Skiing Discipline: Moguls Height: 5'7" Current Residence: Vail, Colorado School: Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy Olympic Experience:
2014 Olympic Winter Games
Career Highlights: 18th, MO, World Championships, Deer Valley, UT, 2011 World Cup Rookie of the Year for women's moguls, 2010 13-time World Cup top 15 finisher Five-time NorAm podium finisher, including three victories
Personal: Kloser has always done a lot of mountain and road biking, and she grew up climbing Colorado 14ers with her family. "I like to play ball sports. I find them fun and good training," she says. "I also enjoy nordic skiing, kayaking and anything adventurous."
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Kloser's only 21, so she's certainly got a shot at a future Olympics. But this year, she looks to be stuck on the sidelines. In the meantime, we continue to hear about lousy snow conditions in Sochi. Let's hope injuries like Kloser's don't become commonplace once the games get underway in earnest.
Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.
More from our Sports archive: "Photos: Meet the twenty Coloradans in the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics."