The Canadian Alpine Ski Team can't catch a break. Whistler's Michael Janyk returned to racing at Adelboden, Switzerland after an ankle sprain kept him sidelined for two events, placing seventh overall.
In the same race, teammate Julien Cousineau went off course in the first run and injured his knee.
It was hard news for a team that has seen over half of its senior members on the injury list at certain times over the last few seasons, but Cousineau was resolute that he would return — if not this season, then definitely next.
"It's going to be a hard six months but I will come back healthy and strong," he said. "I was kind of in trouble before I went down. I was out of balance a bit and my ski grabbed really hard. I just felt my knee pop and move around. There was pain right away and as soon as I landed I grabbed my knee."
It was Cousineau's third knee injury, including injuries in 2006 and 2004. The current injury is similar to the most recent, which likely involves a torn ACL.
Despite the injury, Cousineau stuck around to cheer on Janyk.
Janyk's goal at the start of the season was to be in the top five at every event, but in the first two events wasn't able to advance higher than 14th. He was happier with the way he attacked at Adelboden.
"I made mistakes but I fought like hell," he said. "That was one of the best runs I've done in a long time — the way I attacked and fought through."
Janyk was sitting in 18th after the first run, but made up 11 spots with the fastest second run of the day.
"On the second run I knew I had to keep my skis on the ground a little more," he said.
Marcel Hirscher of Austria took the gold medal, followed by Ivica Kostelic of Croatia. Stefano Gross of Italy placed third.
Janyk's two run time of 2:00.53 was just 0.88 back of the podium, which is pretty good considering his first run was 1.21 off the pace.
Brad Spence also had a good day, placing 17th overall. Only 22 racers would finish two runs of the technical, challenging course. In the first run some 25 racers did not finish.