Los Angeles (AFP) – US downhiller Steven Nyman will miss next month’s Winter Olympics after suffering a season-ending knee injury in a training run last week in Germany, USA Skiing announced Monday.

Nyman tore his right anterior cruciate ligament on Thursday at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, where he suffered a season-ending left knee injury last year when he crashed into the safety netting.

Nyman, who will turn 36 during the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, completed a gruelling rehabilitation and returned to the World Cup series only last month at Val Gardena as he slowly built toward South Korea, qualifying for what would have been his fourth Olympic squad.

In last week’s downhill at Kitzbuehel, Nyman managed top-three training run times and splits before finishing 15th.

His 11 FIS Ski World Cup career podiums included three victories at Val Gardena and with a third place at the Olympic test event at Jeongseon, Nyman was expected to be a downhill contender.

“I was really looking forward to not only representing our country at my fourth Olympics but trying to contend for a medal,” Nyman reflected.”Unfortunately, a year to the day from my left knee injury, I’ve learned that I’ve completely torn the ACL on my other knee.

“The good news is that this injury is much more straightforward than last year, and will be much easier to come back from.”

US coach Sasha Rearick called Nyman “the leader of our family” and added, “this injury is a huge loss to the ski racing community of America.”

Nyman said his focus is now on the 2018-19 season and next year’s world championships in Sweden.

“If all goes well I should be back on snow for regular summer training camps, and in full form by the start of next season,” Nyman said.