At the New Zealand national championships in Nelson last weekend, 2004 world downhill champion Vanessa Quin broke her neck for the second time in less than a year. She last broke it at the 2006 world championships in Rotorua, New Zealand. Although two such breaks may seem unlucky, the 30-year-old Quin did escape paralysis both times.
Quin endoed over the bars during her seeding run through the woods about mid-way down the course.
According to NewsTalkZB, "The crash has left Quin with a fractured C2 vertebra, cracked sternum and injuries to her hands. With the help of a marshall, she walked almost a kilometre to the first-aid tent, before her neck was immobilised." She will likely be in a metal brace for 10 weeks. She is expected to recover but faces several months off the bike.
2006 was an injury-plagued year for Quin. Besides breaking her neck, she also broke her arm at the downhill world cup in Vigo, Spain, in May.
She previously fractured a bone in her neck in a crash on the track about five years ago.