FILE UNDER -- Alpine

Hermann Maier says a sore back may hobble him for the World Cup opener in Soelden

Hermann Maier says a sore back may hobble him for the World Cup opener in SoeldenWorld Cup champion Hermann Maier said Thursday he’s not fully fit for the October 24 season opener because of sore back muscles from training. The four-time World Cup winner says he injured his back in compression during training, and underwent several days of therapy before returning to the slopes Thursday.

“If you cannot move your leg properly, your back muscles should make up for it,” Maier said. “But now that they are hurt, too, it’s getting difficult. I guess I will have to take it as it comes.”

Maier made a sensational comeback last year from a motorcycle accident in August 2001 that nearly cost him a leg. He won’t be in prime shape for the season-opening super-G on the glaciers at Soelden, Austria.

“I seem to always pick the silliest moments for such injuries,” he said. “Fortunately, the first race is not really that serious. I have to be patient, see the first races as training as well and then hope for a miracle.” -Associated Press

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