11th March 2010
Chio arrived shortly after me into Geneva airport and we got a lift to the Formula 1 hotel with the French team guys for the night..slightly embarrassed that my skis were in a long plastic bag. The next morning we were greeted by Isi and Martin (Spanish coach and tech) who had just done a 20hour drive from Granada and we threw our stuff in the back of the van and jumped right in on top of it...literally! We arrived in Grindelwald Switzerland and shortly after we arrived I was greeted by Ken Chance-Larsen. Ken is the physio who had been sent out from the UK by TASS (but he is Norwegian!). I had told poor Ken that I didn’t have any injuries, but by this stage, my tib/fib joint was killing me from being smashed in Branas and my shins on my right leg were giving me serious grief. I took painkillers and persisted with the training, Ken later bandaging my shin inside my boot as it was swelling right along the inside of the bone. Suspected stress fractures, I was unable to pressure my skis properly, and I knew that the end of my season was drawing near. Sadly the vital turn in the course at Grindelwald is a high speed compression type turn on your right foot with bumps. Not surprisingly this is the area of the course I lost all my speed on in qualification and due to only 31 girls finishing, I made the finals in 30th position...eeeek! This was getting worse and worse. The first day of finals the fog came in and you literally couldn't see anything, they decided after running 7 of the 8 girls heats they would postpone it till the next day and re start the whole race. Fortunately the weather was fantastic on the next day and we pulled a great race off. I knew nothing was going to help my shins now, I just gave the start my all, had a decent one, and then of course got overtaken in the vital turn which I tried to pressure my ski but just got pushed down and overtaken. I followed on down and nearly had a large crash off the last jump, entering the jump still on my edge, I came off, headed backwards in the air, and I was sure I was gone, but somehow landed on both edges (putting further stress on my already sore tib/fib joint near my knee) and somehow managed to hold it crossing the finish line, shaking my hand as if to say 'phew that was bloody close!' The swelling down my shin had now moved even further down extending about 20cm down my shin now. Feeling like a bit of an invillid it was off to Meiringen to give it a shot! See below photo sequence of my close call!