One of Canada’s most decorated skiers, Kelly VanderBeek, has officially called it a career.
The 29-year-old speed skier made the announcement on her home hill, Chicopee Ski Resort in Kitchener, Ont., on Saturday. She cited injuries as her main reason.
“As a ski racer I was prepared for injury but the extent of the knee injury I suffered in 2009 was a bigger than I expected. I’ve always believed I would get back and I’m proud to say I got back,” she said.
In December 2009, VanderBeek seriously injured her knee during a training session for a World Cup event in Val d’Isere, France. She attempted a comeback in 2012 but her knee was not 100%.
“Unfortunately, I’ve decided that Sochi 2014 isn’t going to be a possibility because the knee isn’t quite there. But at the same time, I think of the experiences that I’ve had over the past three years and I wouldn’t trade them for the world,” she said. “Sochi was definitely the focus, which is what kept me going as long as I did. I was shooting for the fences and that’s kind of how I try to live life.
“You aim high and sometimes you don’t make it but it doesn’t devalue the fact that you tried.”
VanderBeek was the first Canadian to be on the World Cup podium in Lake Louise, reaching the platform three times. She also finished fourth in the super G at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Turin, Italy.