Aksel Lund Svindal, Norway’s downhill skiing champion, decided to undergo another operation on Tuesday, this time on a troublesome knee. It means Svindal is out for the season, but he hopes to be back in action next season.
“Here we go again,” wrote Svindal himself on social media, along with posting a photo from his hospital bed where he was wearing the typical hospital pyjama top that’s dotted with small Norwegian flags. He wrote that ever since the downhill race at Val Gardena “I’ve had a strange feeling in my knee. Something didn’t seem right.”
It wasn’t – surgeons found a meniscus (cartilage) “that was no longer attached to the bone,” Svindal wrote. That’s “no good” on a downhill course, Svindal added, because it means “no function, and no function means every landing on a jump and every hit to the knee is painful.”
The ever-smiling Svindal, though, stressed that “the good part is that there are great chances of this being much better next winter.”
The bad part, he admitted, is being back on crutches “and no more skiing this winter,” Svindal wrote. That’s what’s happened on a variety of other occasions in recent years, but Svindal has made remarkable comebacks not least this season, when he wound up back on the winners’ podium following surgery last year, too, after a terrible fall.
“Sounds familiar,” Svindal lamented about being on crutches, but added quickly: “If it can be better next year, it’s more than worth it.” Norway’s national skiing federation stated in a press release that Svindal can’t ski for the next six months, but will start retraining again at once.