MUNICH, Germany (AP) _ German skier Florian Eckert hopes to be on the slopes again by May after an operation for a shattered shinbone sustained during a training run spill.

Doctors were not as optimistic about the comeback for Eckert, who unexpectedly won a downhill bronze medal at the World Championships in St. Anton Austria.

``May is very optimistic, but not realistic. If things go well, he will be back on the circuit next season,'' Dr. Hermann May said Thursday,

A plate was inserted in Eckert's right leg after Tuesday's accident on the Reiteralm bei Schladming slope.

``Everything will be OK, I'll be skiing by May,'' Eckert said.