Julia Mancuso

Injured Alpine ski racers miss years, not days, at a time

Just the thought of being at the Olympics on Tuesday made Swiss ski racer Lara Gut smile broadly, and that had nothing to do with it being the last opportunity to train for the downhill, an event in which she earned a bronze at the 2014 Sochi Games.

No, the reason for Gut's excitement was much simpler, as she demonstrated with a two-word exclamation of "I'm here!" while kicking up her left leg. Turns out Tuesday is the one-year anniversary of the operation she had to repair tears to the anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus in that knee, a season-ending injury incurred during practice at the 2017 world championships.

"Everything that was natural, like...