Lindsey Vonn won’t have to worry about beating the reigning world champion in the downhill at the Sochi Olympics.
France’s Marion Rolland will miss the Games after suffering a knee injury in training in Chile on Sunday, according to reports out of France citing the French Ski Federation.
Rolland ruptured an ACL and sprained an MCL in her right knee, according to the French Ski Federation, which did not give a timetable for how long she will be out. The Olympic downhill is Feb. 12, less than five months away. An injury like Rolland’s likely forces skiers to miss at least six months, according to Reuters.
Rolland underwent surgery on the same knee in 2007 and 2010.
Rolland won the world downhill title in Schladming, Austria, in February, five days after Vonn’s crash in the super-G.
Rolland, 30, fell four seconds into her downhill run at the 2010 Olympics and required surgery. Her world title marked the first time she had won a World Cup, World Championship or Olympic race.
The best indicator of Olympic prospects are the World Cup season standings. In the last four seasons, Rolland has finished 11th, sixth, 16th and ninth in the downhill standings. She was certainly not the biggest threat to the recovering Vonn in the Sochi downhill.
Vonn’s biggest competition is sizing up to be the two best all-around skiers in the world — rivals Tina Maze of Slovenia and Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany — who were second and third behind Vonn in the downhill standings last season.