Swiss Olympic downhill champion Didier Defago is out for the 2010-11 ski season after tearing ligaments in his left knee during pre-season training on Switzerland’s Zermatt glacier.
The 32-year-old World Cup star went down in practice during a full speed super G run. Defago was flown by helicopter to a nearby hospital in Sion, where doctors confirmed via an MRI that the skier had torn his left anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and damaged the medial collateral ligament (MCL).
Defago’s long road to recovery will begin on Friday when he will have surgery on Friday in Geneva. Swiss Ski Federation team doctor Hans Spring has confirmed that the ACL tear will keep Defago out for the entire 2010-11 World Cup season, including the 2011 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.
Defago has three World Cup wins to his name over the course of his career, including one on the infamous Hahnenkamm at Kitzbühel in 2009.