In 2014, a knee injury derailed Tommy Biesemeyer’s Olympic dreams. In 2018, an eleventh-hour ankle injury will do the same.
Biesemeyer suffered a right ankle injury during downhill training on Wednesday. He was taken by team medical staff to a local clinic, where he was treated and released. He will not be able to compete in the downhill, and his place in the race will be taken by Ryan Cochran-Siegle.
Following his injury in 2014 that caused him to miss making the Olympic team, Biesemeyer returned to action in the 2014-15 world cup season, and had a career-best eighth-place finish in December 2016. He had a season-best 18th-place finish in super-G at the Val Gardena, Italy, world cup in December.
"I wonder why this happens. It is hard to not think if there is a deeper meaning to it all," he said in a statement. "You are supposed to be optimistic in times like these and say something like, ‘I will come back stronger than ever.’ But I just can't bring myself to do it. I am honored to have been named to Team USA and walking in the Opening Ceremony is a moment I’ll never forget.“
Cochran-Siegle already has one Olympic race under his belt with a DNF in the alpine combined after crashing in the downhill. Hailing from a family that has produced six Olympic skiers, he won junior world titles in downhill and combined in 2012. He missed significant time between 2013 and 2016 recovering from injuries, and the best result of his career was a 10th-place finish at a combined world cup in December 2016 in Santa Caterina, Italy. He competed in the 2017 world championships, finishing 19th in alpine combined, 25th in giant slalom and 28th in super-G.