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Lindsey Vonn out for Winter Games

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POSTED January 7, 2014 11:54 p.m.

The Associated Press

Less than two weeks after reconstructive right knee surgery in February 2013, Lindsey Vonn already was sounding a positive note, saying she was “really looking forward to Sochi” and defending her Olympic downhill gold medal.

Along the way to the next Winter Games, though, Vonn began facing more setbacks. As she’d move past one, another would surface. In the end, it was too much, even for Vonn, the most accomplished U.S. ski racer in history. Expected to be one of the biggest stars at the upcoming Games, Vonn announced Tuesday — exactly one month before the opening ceremony — she won’t be able to race in Russia.

In a Facebook posting, Vonn said she is “devastated” to miss the Olympics, “but the reality has sunk in that my knee is just too unstable to compete at this level.”

Her personal publicist, Lewis Kay, said in a statement the 29-year-old from Vail, Colo., will have knee surgery again “shortly.”

Like many in her risk-filled sport, Vonn has dealt with injuries often, particularly at major events. She withdrew midway through the 2011 world championships because of a concussion. She raced with a severely bruised shin at the last Olympics. She skipped a race at the 2009 worlds after slicing her thumb open on a champagne bottle. She hurt her knee in training and missed a pair of races at the 2007 worlds. She took a scary fall during training at the 2006 Olympics, then left the hospital to compete.

US figure skaters intent
on seizing the moment

BOSTON (AP) — Go out and get it.

That’s the mindset and mantra for competitors at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships this week. Their objectives: grabbing a spot on the Sochi Olympic team.

There are three slots available in women’s and ice dance, two in men’s and in pairs. So let the free-for-all begin.

“In 2010, I was 17 or 18 and thought, ‘Yeah, the Olympics, that might happen,’” two-time U.S. champion Ashley Wagner said. “Now, I’m set on making it reality. I’ve taken all the thoughtful steps to get there.

“My approach for nationals is that, while no doubt this is a huge event, if you make it a huge event in your mind, it becomes unbearable. So just make it another day at the rink and it’s cool. And go for it.”

Kerrigan to be NBC analyst during Sochi Olympics

NEW YORK (AP) — Nancy Kerrigan will work for NBC during during the Sochi Olympics, 20 years after she was the story of the 1994 Games because of the rivalry with Tonya Harding that turned violent.

The network said Tuesday that the two-time figure skating medalist will contribute to figure skating coverage as an analyst. She will also make appearances on the “Today” show and “Access Hollywood.” She will not be doing color commentary on the competitions.

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