Even as Lindsey Vonn wraps up her career as a competitive skier, she’s still fighting with the mountains.
Vonn, who announced her retirement last week, crashed in the final super-G of her career at the world championships on Tuesday. Just 30 seconds into her run, she straddled a gate while she was airborne and went tumbling into the plastic netting on the side of the course. According to the Associated Press, Vonn was wearing a safety suit that inflated like an airbag as she fell, softening her landing. She was able to get up and finish the race under her own power.
Vonn has crashed many, many times in her career, and even though she’s got just one more race left before she officially retires, she was able to discuss this crash with her trademark humor and candor.
She also managed to escape serious injury in the crash.
Injuries are why Vonn, 34, decided to retire. She’s had six knee surgeries and will have her seventh (and hopefully final) knee surgery soon. She’s missing cartilage and a meniscus from at least one of her knees. She’s been bruised and battered by skiing, and she’s always gotten back up. But as she said during her news conference, she’s simply run out of steps.
Vonn still has one more race left to run before retirement: the downhill on Sunday. Her knees are shot and she’s sore from her crash on Tuesday, but Vonn has no plans to take it easy or give anything but her best in her final career race.