Maier may not ski this year, but won't retire yet


FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) - Former Olympic champion Hermann Maier might miss the entire ski season while recovering from a leg injury but has no plans to retire.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time overall World Cup champion nearly lost his right leg in a motorcycle accident in August 2001. He also injured his leg this past August while gate skiing in Chile for the first time since the accident.

"It's very possible that that I miss the whole winter again," Maier told the German magazine Kicker on Monday. "But retirement is out of question. I am not thinking about it, I've never spoken about it."

The 29-year-old skier told the magazine he still couldn't run or walk downhill and he had no idea how long it would take to return to skiing.

"I only know that it will be a long time, maybe until March, maybe even longer," Maier said. "I know my body and when I listen to it, it looks very gloomy. It will never be like it was. Some parts of my right leg are still numb."

Maier is not thinking about the world championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland, in February.

"It's very far away in my head," he said. "I don't even know the precise dates."