Less than two months ago, the skiing action sports lost one of its most notable stars when Sarah Burke tragically died in a training accident in Salt Lake City, and now another Canadian skiing star has had a fatal accident.
Ski cross racer Nick Zoricic died on Sunday after crashing hard into the netting lining in the final jump of a World Cup event in Gridelwald, Switzerland. Like Burke, Zoricic was only 29.
Zoricic lied motionless after crashing directly into the netting before the Round of Eight finish. He was treated by doctors at the scene, and then airlifted to an Interlaken hospital. His death was a result of severe neurotrauma.
International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge called Zoricic's death a very sad day for the whole Olympic Movement.
He was a young, gifted athlete who tragically died doing the sport he loved, said Rogge, in a statement.
Zoricic was born Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina, a republic of the former Yugoslavia. Sarajevo hosted the 1984 Winter Olympics, which was about a year after Zoricic was born.
His family emigrated to Toronto when he was five, and was an alpine ski racer before taking up ski-cross. Zoricic was making steady gains in the sport, and was emerging as a top ski cross star. He finished third in the World Cup race in France in January.
Zoricic's death raises questions about safety in the sport.
Max Gartner, president of Alpine Canada, defended the sport's safety precautions.
I would say it's a freak accident, from here. It doesn't happen often, but it's devastating, said Gartner. We look at all our athletes as members of our family, so it's hard.
Here is video of the accident: