McCain (pictured at right, click photo to enlarge), a 2000 Olympian and member of the 2001 silver medal-winning world championship team, underwent shoulder surgery three months ago. He will skip the upcoming Qualifier and is undecided about USA’s, where he may or may not compete “an event or two,” according to U.S. National Team Coordinator Ron Brant.
“It’s not a rush for Steve,” Brant said. “He might do one or two events [at Championships] but we don’t want him to start back again when he is not 100%. I keep telling him, ‘Take your time.’ This is not as critical a year as ’03 for us.”
McCain should be back to full workouts in another week or two, but won’t try to be in routine-shape before the 2003 Winter Cup next February. “Sure, he would like to compete [this year],” Brant said, “but he’s also looking at the big picture, with 2003 and 2004 coming up.”
Teammate Gatson is on a similar path, though, unlike McCain, he plans to compete at last a few events, without dismounts, at the 2002 Qualifier.
“He’s going to a do a few things, a couple of events without dismounts, but he’s not trying to go to Championships or anything,” Brant explains. “In the gym he’s working four events without dismounts but, right now, Jason is concentrating completely on Winter Cup.