Today Bode Miller did nothing.
Not exactly true. He did say he was doing nothing for the rest of the year, at least in terms of ski racing.
Miller, the last American to win the downhill at Wengen, Beaver Creek, Kvitfjell or Bormio, and the last to win a super G at Are or Val Gardena, and the last male to win a slalom, announced his recovery from knee surgery will not be completed in time to make a return to racing this season.
He injured the knee racing at Sochi in the pre-Olympic test of the downhill track. It is precisely that course he is aiming at now.
“It was a tough for me to miss a season of ski racing, but this decision was easy for me when I look at opportunity next year,” he said. “2014 will be my last Olympics.”
Head coach Sasha Rearick called the decision “Incredibly smart and strategic,” saying, “He’s become legendary for pushing the limits of what is possible on skis, but knows an additional injury to his knee could put the 2014 Olympics in jeopardy. At this point he is not fully recovered to race and has turned his focus to being 100percent fit for Sochi.”
Miller had the knee micro-fractured as part of the rebuilding process and has said athletes who have had the same procedure told him they tried to return to their sports too soon after surgery. He has been, and now remains, determined not to make the same mistake.
With 33 World Cup wins, world championships in four different disciplines and five Olympic medals already in hand, the 35 year old Miller has nothing left to prove. Though he has cut off many seasons before the final races, he has started 15 straight and holds the record for consecutive World Cup starts at 136, remarkable considering this season lists a total of 36 men’s races.
Miller said he is expecting his knee will be stronger than any time since he first injured it in 2001 and added he was “super-motivated to do great things next year.”
US Ski Team President and CEO Bill Marolt said: “Throughout the season, the USSA has been working closely with Bode to ensure his recovery is thorough and not rushed. We fully support his decision to do what is best for his health and career. We are also taking action to ensure that his point profile is protected within FIS rules. We look forward to seeing Bode back on the slopes next season and continue to cheer on the rest of our Best in the World team this year.”
Now there’s just the matter of selling his boat, buying a house and getting ready for the arrival of his second child.