Olympic downhill champion Lindsey Vonn says she is taking a break from World Cup skiing to regain strength after being hospitalized last month with a stomach infection.
“After talking with my family and consulting with my coaches and trainers, I have decided to take a break from the World Cup circuit,” Vonn said in a statement posted on Facebook. “Since my intestinal infection last month, I have been struggling with my energy and strength. I believe that some time off the mountain will help me regain the physical strength that I require to compete at the level that I demand from myself.”
Vonn, a 28-year-old American, did not say when she would return to the sport. She competes in all Alpine skiing disciplines, excelling in the speed events of downhill and super-G. The next World Cup downhill and super-G races are Jan. 12-13 in St. Anton, Austria.
A four-time overall World Cup champion, Vonn is fourth in the overall standings this season behind Tina Maze of Slovenia, Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany and Kathrin Zettel of Austria. Vonn leads the downhill standings, which she has won the last five seasons, over fellow American Stacey Cook.
Vonn was hospitalized in Colorado for three days with severe intestinal pain. Following her recovery, she won two downhill races and two super-G events.
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