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Report: Sarah Hendrickson suffers knee ligament damage in ski jumping accident in Europe

Aug 21, 2013, 11:02 AM EDT

Sarah Hendrickson Reuters

World champion ski jumper Sarah Hendrickson reportedly broke ligaments in a ski jumping fall Wednesday.

Hendrickson, 19, suffered a right knee injury that included ligament damage, according to the Italian website wintersport-news. Hendrickson flew 148 meters in Oberstdorf, Germany, according to a report and alluded to on a photo posted to Hendrickson’s Instagram on Wednesday.

The longest any female jumper flew last World Cup season was 134 meters. The men’s Olympic record on a large hill is 144 meters. A Finnish jumper flew 225.5 meters in Oberstdorf in 2009, but it’s unknown if Hendrickson was on the same hill.

Women’s ski jumpers usually compete on the normal hill — rather than the large hill — and jump shorter than 100 meters.

The U.S. Ski Team confirmed Hendrickson suffered a right knee injury and was given a preliminary check in Germany. The U.S. Ski Team is gathering more details but said she will fly home with the team on Friday and will then be evaluated in Utah.

Hendrickson has been considered one of the U.S.’ top gold-medal hopes at the Sochi Olympics. Women’s ski jumping is making its debut at the Winter Games after a long fight to be included on the program.

Hendrickson and Japan’s Sara Takanashi, 16, have a growing rivalry going. Takanashi beat out Hendrickson for the 2012-13 season World Cup title.

“Thanks to everyone for the kind words and thankful for @tomhilde for coming to make me feel better :) Nothing is confirmed and going home to get everything checked out. At least I set a new PR right? 148 was kinda fun? #roadtorecovery,” was written with this Instagram photo:

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