Travis Ganong, top U.S. downhill skier, to miss Olympics

AP
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Travis Ganong, the only U.S. man to win a World Cup Alpine skiing event in the last two years, tore an ACL in a race crash Thursday and will miss the Olympics, according to his social media.

Ganong, 29, earned downhill silver at the 2015 World Championships in Colorado, one of few highlights for the U.S. men’s speed team since the Sochi Olympics.

He also won a World Cup downhill last Jan. 27, ending the U.S.’ longest drought between men’s World Cup wins since 2000.

The previous win was by Ted Ligety on Oct. 25, 2015.

Ganong and the rest of the U.S. downhillers have struggled this season. Ganong’s best World Cup finish before his crash was 16th.

No U.S. man has finished in the top eight of a World Cup downhill or super-G this season. Ligety has the top finish in any event, a fifth in a giant slalom on Dec. 17.

The U.S. Olympic Alpine team will be named in three weeks.

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As you may have seen, I crashed in the downhill race in Bormio a few days ago, and tweaked my right knee.  After flying home and getting an MRI, it is confirmed that I have torn my ACL which unfortunately means my season is over. Bormio is a bittersweet place for me now as it is where I scored my first World Cup Points, had my first top 10, and where I won my first World Cup DH (in nearby Santa Caterina). However, now it is also the place where I had my first crash after 115 World Cup starts, and the first time that I have hit the B-net, in both training and racing! Having an injury is tough, and I am especially disappointed that this happened 5 weeks before the Olympics in South Korea where I was hoping to represent my country for the second time and fight for medals.  Now my next 6 months will obviously be very different to those of a World Cup skier, but I am excited for this new challenge and I am looking forward to re-setting, re-motivating, and working harder than ever to come back even stronger than I am now.  I still have many goals and much that I want to accomplish as a professional skier, and I can’t wait to get back into the starting gate again next season.  I will also have a great rehab partner with @mmgagnon rehabbing by my side! I want to thank all of my sponsors, fans, coaches, teammates and everyone at U.S. Ski & Snowboard, my friends and my family for their continued support and I want to let you all know that it is an honor being a part of the snow sports community! I will be cheering for the whole team in South Korea and I am excited to see so many talented athletes achieve their goals at the Games. I am planning on having surgery late this week after the swelling has gone down and I have my range of motion back.  After that I will start the rehab process here in Lake Tahoe, and also re-start working on my Ski Resort Management and Business degree from @sierranevadacollege .  I am also looking forward to having some time to work on and launch a new coffee company @pacificcrestcoffee (more to come)! So here is to a new year filled with new challenges!  The road back is not always easy, but I am embracing it and will be ready…

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