The best female downhill racers in the world are at Lake Louise this weekend, but there’s one conspicuous absence: Lindsey Vonn. Following a crash in a Super G training run at Copper Mountain on Nov. 20, in which Vonn sustained another non-surgical knee injury, Vonn decided to pull out of the World Cup races in Lake Louise in favor of rehabbing the injury.
Read more: Lindsey Vonn Forced to Skip Lake Louise Race
The decision has been a gut-wrenching one for Vonn. Of all the downhill courses on the World Cup, Lake Louise has been her favorite and most successful. Having announced at the start of the season that she's retiring and the 2018-’19 World Cup circuit would be her last—whether she breaks Stenmark’s record or not—Vonn now had to come to terms with the fact that she would miss the opportunity to ski the Lake Louise course one final time.
Vonn opens up about this difficult decision in her first ever video on her new YouTube channel Lindsey Vonn TV. “I’ve announced already that I’m retiring after this World Cup season, so to miss my favorite stop on the tour is devastating, to put it lightly,” Vonn explains in the video. “I cried for a long time in the hospital room. Now I know that I’m going to be back shortly, I’ll probably be able to race in a few weeks. But just the fact that I’m missing Lake Louise is a huge blow.”
“At this point I’m thinking I need to come back,” she continues. “I know I’ve said many times that I’m not going to come back, because my body can’t handle it anymore. But I was also planning on racing Lake Louise… So as confusing as this may be to other people, to me it makes sense. I’m probably going to have to come back next year and just race Lake Louise.”
Of course, that’s just what she’s thinking—off the record.