Two-time Olympic champion cyclist Kristina Vogel has revealed that she was paralysed in an accident during a training session in June, telling Der Spiegel magazine that she'll never walk again.
No matter how you dress it up, I can't walk anymore. - Vogel
The German, who won team sprint gold at London 2012 and sprint gold at Rio 2016, suffered severe spinal injuries in a high-speed collision with another cyclist in the German city of Cottbus.
Vogel, 27, said she knew immediately after the crash that she was paralysed.
"I saw someone walk away with my shoes. But I didn't feel it when they were taken off. I realized immediately now I am paraplegic, there will be no more walking."
The 11-time world champion, who underwent several hours of surgery immediately after the accident, had remained silent over her condition up until her interview on Friday.
"I didn't want people to see me that injured. But I believe that the sooner you accept a new situation, the sooner you learn to deal with it."
Despite the difficult news, the self-proclaimed "crazy girl" who became the first German to win Olympic gold in the sprint, despite a broken saddle, has displayed her championship qualities by opting to look on the brighter side of things.
Now I can say I have reached a point where I can say: here I am and I am fine. I am still the same crazy person. I want to be a source of motivation for others.