Canadian ski cross racer Nick Zoricic died Saturday of head injuries he sustained in a crash during a World Cup event in Grindelwald, Switzerland, officials reported.
As a press release from the International Ski Federation (FIS) said, Zoricic “crashed heavily,” and the Ski Cross World Cup this weekend “was overshadowed by the fatal accident.”
Zoricic’s tragic mishap took place just before the finish in round eight, when he crashed “directly into the safety netting and thereafter (was) laying motionless,” according to the press release.
The real question is why was the “safety” netting so close to the course? A look at the horrendous video of Zoricic’s crash makes it abundantly clear the netting was too near the path of the skiers.
Following his accident, Zoricic was given medical care immediately by team doctors, “with expert care by the Swiss emergency response team Air Glacier following within minutes,” the press release said.
“Despite the best efforts of all involved and the reanimation of Zoricic in hospital, he died at 12:35 as a result of severe neurotrauma,” the international ski group said.
Zoricic, who was 29, began his ski career as an Alpine athlete and switched to ski cross. He achieved two podium places in his Ski Cross career (2010/11 and 2011/12) and was sixth in the overall standings in 2011.
After the tragic event on Saturday, ski officials canceled the entire event in Grindelwald, including the remainder of Saturday’s race and the World Cup Final on Sunday.
The Organising Committee, FIS, and Swiss-Ski expressed their deepest condolences to the family and friends of Nik Zoricic and the Canadian Ski Team.
As the Associated Press pointed out, Zoricic isn’t the first skier to die this year. In January Sarah Burke, a 29-year-old freestyle skier, was killed in an accident on a Utah halfpipe.