Norwegian Skier Aleksander Aamodt Kilde Recounts Harrowing Crash and Recovery

Norwegian Skier Aleksander Aamodt Kilde Recounts Harrowing Crash and Recovery

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde vividly recalls the terrifying moments of his season-ending ski crash during a World Cup downhill race in Wengen, Switzerland. Hurtling down the slope at 120 km/h (74.6 mph), Kilde suffered a dislocated shoulder, two torn shoulder ligaments, and a significant calf laceration, necessitating immediate surgery due to nerve damage.

Norwegian Skier Aleksander Aamodt Kilde Recounts Harrowing Crash and Recovery
Norwegian Skier Aleksander Aamodt Kilde Recounts Harrowing Crash and Recovery

Speaking from his hospital bed in Innsbruck to CNN Sport’s Coy Wire, Kilde shared the disorienting sequence of events. He collapsed before the crucial finish turn, tumbled into the gate, slid into the nets at 90 degrees, and witnessed the collision. Battling excruciating pain, he remained conscious during fleeting moments, emphasizing survival. Fainting intermittently, Kilde regained consciousness to the sight of his leg injury, fearing the potential end of his career.

In a hospital interview, Kilde expressed the multitude of thoughts that raced through his mind upon seeing his leg injury. While in and out of consciousness, his sole focus was staying awake and present, grappling with the severity of the situation. Mikaela Shiffrin, two-time Olympic gold medalist and Kilde’s girlfriend, rushed to his side, providing emotional support through surgery and recovery.

Shiffrin, often hailed as one of the greatest skiers, went on to secure an emotional victory in the FIS World Cup women’s slalom in Austria. Kilde expressed gratitude for Shiffrin’s unwavering support, describing her as incredible and emphasizing the importance of her presence during challenging times.

Despite Kilde’s season-ending injuries, he remains optimistic and views the current setback as a temporary hurdle. Acknowledging the frustration of ending the season without a victory, Kilde shifted his perspective to prioritize health and recovery. While facing one of the significant challenges in his career, Kilde looks forward to returning to the slopes and appreciating the recovery process.

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