Ashley Cain of the Team USA Figure Skating duo with partner Timothy LeDuc suffered a serious fall on Friday while competing in the Golden Spin of Zagreb in Croatia.
Cain, 23, was on her way down from being hoisted high above LeDuc’s head when she crash landed, head first, on the ice.
The moment of impact was caught on camera and appears in the video below at about 3.20 into the clip.
Despite appearing to have been knocked unconscious for a moment, Cain miraculously gets to her feet with a bit of help from LeDuc, 28, who was also knocked flat on his back, and then she launches right back in to their program making it through to completion.
Following the accident, Cain delivered a message through US Figure Skating’s Twitter account that she ‘got checked out at the hospital’ and would ‘continue recovery back home.’
Cain and LeDuc, who have been skating together since May of 2016, started off their routine as usual, poised to make a great showing.
LeDuc lifted his partner from the ice a total of five times without incident before things went awry.
On a sixth toss into a spin, Cain stumbled on her landing and fell to the ground, but got back up again and quickly went into the lift that would end in disaster.
LeDuc held Cain overhead by both hands at her waist, before switching to one, and then pulling her spinning body back down toward him, and the ground.
But instead of whatever graceful dismount was planned, something, though it’s not clear what, went horribly wrong.
In an instant, Cain smacked into the ice, with the back of her head hitting the rink first.
As she came down hard on the ice, her legs folded over head and the tip of her skate blades touched the ice, with her body folded in half at the waist.
Then her legs seemingly went limp and she lay still, flat on her back, for a moment.
LeDuc was also knocked the ground in the shuffle, but not with nearly the same force, and he quickly got up to tend to his teammate.
It appeared almost as if Cain was completely unconscious before LeDuc started to raise her, then she snapped to awareness in what looked like a bit of a daze.
LeDuc seemed momentarily unsure if they would go on, as he gently grabbed her face and looked into her eyes once they were both upright, but Cain sprung right into action.
LeDuc followed her lead and the two completed their routine, which lasted about another 40 seconds.
After they finished, LeDuc put his face in his hands and skated to Cain’s side, who had her hand on the back of her head.
Cain even managed to strike their finishing poses, making sure to address each side of the audience, before leaving the ice and tending to whatever her medical needs might be.
At 5pm Eastern on Friday, US Ice Skating said it would provide an update on her condition when it had one, and at 11.31pm Cain sent a message to her fans, through the organization’s Twitter account.
‘Hey everyone, thank you so much for all the wishes and for checking in. It really means a lot to us. I got checked out at the hospital and I am going to continue my recovery back home,’ Cain said.
‘Thank you for all of your love and for supporting us! The medical team and staff were wonderful.’
This year alone, the duo have brought home two first-place finishes, at both the 2018 Ondrej Nepela Trophy and US International Classic competitions.
They grabbed silver medals at the 2018 Four Continents Championships, came in third and Skate America and got pewter medals for fourth place at the US Championships.
The two are coached by Cain’s parents, Peter Cain and Darlene Cain, and Nina Mozer.
SOURCE: Dailymail, by STEPHANIE HANEY