Image Credit: GEPA Pictures

Laurenne Ross took to Instagram on Wednesday, September 25th, to announce that she would not be participating in the 2019/20 ski season. Her decision comes after a long period of mulling over whether or not she should completely end her career, or continue to pursue the sport she loves.

Back in February of 2019, just before World Championships in Are, Sweden were set to kick off, Ross found herself once again sidetracked by an injury incurred during training warm-ups. The 31-year-old athlete had originally thought she could return to the circuit prior to the end of the season before further examination showed she had in fact torn her LCL and meniscus and would have to undergo surgery. She also need tibia-fibula reconstruction.

Given her past injury record, Ross is no stranger to the extensive process athletes must go through mentally and physically in order to fully recover. Her last major injury she sustained prior to PyeongChang in 2017. It was an emotional one, one that pushed her to recover as quickly as possible in order to return for the Olympics. This time around, the U.S. Ski Team veteran is in no rush. She knows she must honor her body and her health first if she wants competitive ski racing to remain an option for her in the future.

“I want to do it right: make sure I’m 100% ready when I get back on snow. 100% strong, 100% healthy — in body and in mind. I’m hoping to get back on snow sometime in the next few months, but that won’t give me enough time to properly prepare for this upcoming winter racing season,” Ross wrote in her Instagram post.

Of course she will miss the World Cup, her teammates, and skiing with other friends on the tour, but Ross is looking forward to making a strong comebck in the 2020/21 season.

View this post on Instagram

Since my crash at World Championships this February, I've been relentlessly debating whether or not to continue ski racing. After so many crashes and serious injuries, it doesn't seem like the "smart" way to move forward. I cherish my health and want to be able to ski, hike, and ride my bike well into my old age….and this last crash made me question whether that would be possible. If I am to continue life as a ski racer, I would be inherently taking big risks that may not allow me to maintain my health in a sustainable way. Especially after so many concussions, I've recently felt that the easiest and safest path to living the life that I want is down one that does not subject my body to the injuries it inevitably endures through ski racing. But I'm not one to take the easy or safe route. And ski racing is just too dang fun. So after going back and forth, weighing my options and contemplating my future, I've decided to keep skiing. I'm working hard on my recovery, but am still not ready to ski. My knee has been doing well and responding great to rehab, but I've resolved to take this recovery slower than my last one (as I was rushing back for the Olympic season). I want to do it right: make sure I'm 100% ready when I get back on snow. 100% strong, 100% healthy — in body and in mind. I'm hoping to get back on snow sometime in the next few months, but that won't give me enough time to properly prepare for this upcoming winter racing season. So I'm going to take this winter off to regain my strength and prepare for the 2020-2021 season. I've been missing skiing a lot lately, especially while my team has been down in Chile training. I miss the mountains, I miss the snow, I miss the speed and the rush and the feeling I get while racing down a course. I'm going to have a tough time watching my teammates and friends race all winter, while I can't be out there. But I know, deep down, this is the best decision for me. I need more time, so I'm going to take it. Thank-you all so much for your support on this journey! I'm incredibly grateful to have so many wonderful people in my life, and could not do what I've done without you all 💜💙❤️

A post shared by Laurenne Ross (@lalalaurenne) on

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Mackenzie Moran
Staff Writer
- Born and raised in Metro-Detroit, Michigan, Mackenzie grew up ski racing all over the Mitten.​ When s​he moved out west in search of mountains, she attended the University of Oregon, where she achieved degrees in Journalism and Environmental Science. She raced USCSA and was captain of the UO Alpine Ski Team. She currently resides in Salt Lake City and serves as the Women's World Cup Staff Writer for Ski Racing Media.
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