First, it was her damaged thumb.
Then, it was her badly bruised left arm.
Now, it's her shin - Lindsey Vonn's badly bruised shin.
For the third time after her third injury, Vonn turned
to Colorado for help.
Vonn, ski racing's international cover girl and the two-time defending World Cup overall champion, contacted
inventor/designer Mark Joseph of Aspen to design a special brace to support her injured shin while she trained for her
Olympic races at Whistler Mountain. She had worked with Joseph after her two earlier injuries.
Just a month and a half ago, Joseph designed the special cheetah" brace for her left arm that enabled Vonn to train
after that painful bone bruise.
Last year, Joseph designed the brace Vonn wore on her thumb after it was injured by a shattering champagne bottle
during a World Cup victory
The shin brace is the latest device Joseph fabricated for Vonn, using unique polymer plastic layers that he
The patents for the braces and the unique materials were secured by Glenn Webb, a Durango-based patent attorney who has
worked extensively with Joseph over the last 20 years. Webb and Joseph were featured in an article in The Durango
section Feb. 5.
Webb worked in the U.S. Patent Office in the 1980s before law school and a career in patent law. He was working at a
Denver law firm when he first connected with Joseph.
Now they're both principals in Exos Medical, the Minnesota-based company that makes braces and other medical
applications from Joseph's designs.
Webb relocated to Durango last year, and he continues to provide patent support for Joseph - the Aspen inventor who is
providing a lot of
support for Vonn.
The 12th annual Dave Spencer Ski Classic for Adaptive Sports will return to Purgatory on Feb. 26-28.
The annual extravaganza for the Adaptive Sports Association includes a variety of racing, skiing and other events at
The event is the major fundraiser for Adaptive Sports. Go to the Adaptive Sports Web site asadurango.com for more.
Shifting gears from skiing to cycling, Durango native Carmen Small won the prestigious three-stage Valley of the Sun
competition in Arizona last week.
Small, a pro cyclist racing for Colavita/Baci/Cooking Light, finished second in the Valley of the Sun time trial in
Buckeye, Ariz. She was third in the
57-mile road race in Casa Grande. And she was fourth in the criterium in downtown Phoenix. Together, her times put her
in first place in the overall among the pro women by a slim 2-second margin.
A former triathlete and competitive kayaker, Small, the daughter of Alan Small of Durango and Donna Nazario of
Hesperus, is in her third season as a professional cyclist.
She returns home to Durango to compete in the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic every year, including 2009 when she won the
She's also a former standout volleyball player. Small was a member of Durango's state championship volleyball team in
1996. She also played two years of college volleyball before moving into the triathlon arena.