Neureuther escapes serious injury in car crash

ROSA KHUTOR, Russia Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:21pm GMT

A person poses under a set of Olympic rings as the sun rises on the Olympic Park at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn

A person poses under a set of Olympic rings as the sun rises on the Olympic Park at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, February 12, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Gary Hershorn

ROSA KHUTOR, Russia (Reuters) - Bavarian prosecutors are investigating German slalom specialist Felix Neureuther following a car accident on an icy road on his way to the airport from where he was due to fly to the Sochi Olympic Games, a German police spokesman said on Friday.

One of the medal favorites in the giant slalom and slalom races, Neureuther was being treated for possible whiplash after he hit a crash barrier on the way from Garmisch-Partenkirchen to Munich early on Friday.

The 29-year-old was able to continue driving but went to see his doctor in Munich, from where he had intended to take an early morning flight to Sochi, via Frankfurt.

"Police and prosecutors have opened an investigation into "this case," a spokesman for Upper Bavarian police told Reuters by phone.

"Anyone who causes an accident is obliged to stay at the scene but Mr Neureuther continued his drive and called police."

Neureuther was in the car with his biathlete girlfriend Miriam Goessner, who has been the talk of her sport after appearing naked in the German edition of Playboy on Thursday.

She is not taking part in Sochi because of an injury.

"Luckily nothing bad happened to us," Goessner told German newspaper tz. "The ice came out of nowhere. You couldn't foresee it. It was lucky it was so early and there were no other cars around."

Neureuther was still being examined by his doctor, who would then determine whether he would fly to Sochi to start in Wednesday's giant slalom and next Saturday's slalom, said Ralph Eder, spokesman for the German skiing federation.

The police spokesman said he expected there would be no legal problem with Neureuther, the son of double Olympic champion Rosi Mittermaier and six-time slalom World Cup winner Christian Neureuther, flying to Sochi.

"In my personal view, Neureuther can fly to Sochi and the police wishes him every success in his sport," he said, adding that the damage to the crash barrier appeared to be "not dramatic".

Despite having had an injury-plagued season, Neureuther is tipped to be a medal contender in both races. He won a World Cup giant slalom and two slaloms last month, including the prestigious Kitzbuehel slalom.

(Additional reporting by Julien Pretot, reporting by Annika Breidthardt, editing by Alan Baldwin. Editing by Mitch Phillips)

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