U.S. figure skating star Gracie Gold has pulled out of two key international events as she continues to seek treatment for depression and other issues, making it increasingly unlikely she will participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Gold said in a statement released to media outlets Friday that she will not compete in Grand Prix events in China and France next month. She had said when announcing in September that she was stepping away from the ice to undergo treatment that she still planned to participate in those events.
“It saddens me deeply to sit out this Grand Prix Series, but I know it is for the best," Gold said in Friday's statement, via NBC Sports. "I am currently in treatment for depression, anxiety and an eating disorder. I will not have adequate training time to prepare and compete at the level that I want to."
Missing the Grand Prix events will make it extraordinarily difficult for Gold to make a serious run at the U.S. team for the Pyeongchang Games, as those competitions will be factored into the team selection process heading into January's U.S. championships.
Gold, 22, placed fourth in the individual competition at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and won bronze with the U.S. in the team event. She was the U.S. national champion in 2014 and 2016.
But she finished a disappointing sixth at the 2017 championships in January and her then-coach told USA Today afterward that the skater had been "in a deep, deep, deep depression."