Olympic ski champ Sofia Goggia to miss worlds after breaking knee bone
Italian has been dominant force in downhill this season, winning the last 4 races
Olympic downhill champion Sofia Goggia will miss the world championships in February after breaking a bone in her right knee on Sunday.
The Italian ski federation said Goggia fell while skiing down to the valley with other competitors after a World Cup super-G in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, was postponed until Monday because of fog.
FISI said examinations at La Madonnina clinic in Milan on Sunday evening revealed that Goggia suffered "a compound fracture of the lateral tibial plateau of the right knee."
It was not immediately clear how long Goggia will be out.
Goggia was a strong favourite for the Feb. 13 downhill at the worlds in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy. She has been the dominating force in downhill this season, winning the last four races in the discipline.
She finished fourth in a super-G on the Kandahar course Saturday, trailing winner Lara Gut-Behrami by one second.
Sunday's accident came a year after Goggia fractured her left arm in a season-ending super-G crash at the same venue in southern Germany.
Spectacular but risky race style
The 28-year-old Italian skier, known for her spectacular and sometimes risky race style, is no stranger to severe knee injuries.
As a teenager, she tore ligaments in both knees in two crashes in 2010. Two years later, still as a 19-year-old prospect, she had to sit out the 2012 junior worlds in Roccaraso after a giant slalom crash the week before.
A week after earning her first World Cup points, in November 2013, Goggia tore ligaments in her left knee in a downhill crash at Lake Louise and missed the Sochi Olympics.
She returned the following season but cut her campaign short again with knee problems in January 2015.
Goggia missed the first three months of the 2018-19 season after breaking an ankle in the off-season, but later that season won super-G silver at the worlds in Sweden, beaten to the title by Mikaela Shiffrin.
In the current season, Goggia has been on course to win her second World Cup downhill title. She had edged Lindsey Vonn by three points in the final discipline standings of 2017-18.
With three races left, Goggia is 195 points ahead of American racer Breezy Johnson and 210 ahead of last year's winner, Corinne Suter of Switzerland.
The worlds in Cortina d'Ampezzo open with the women's Alpine combined event on Feb. 8.