December 21, 2013, LAKE LOUISE, Alta. (ISN) – Dominique Maltais of Petite-Rivière St-François, Que., raced to a silver medal on Saturday to conclude the second stop on the snowboard cross World Cup circuit.
With the Canadian veteran breathing down her neck the entire Big Final, Lindsey Jacobellis of the U.S., held the lead to the finish for the gold. Maltais was right behind the American but just couldn’t capitalise on an opening to move ahead.
”I am extremely satisfied with second place today it shows I’m very consistent right now,” said Maltais, also second at the season opening World Cup in Austria two weeks ago. It was her 33rd career World Cup medal.
”In the final, I made an error right after a good start and lost my focus for a split second. She was able to pass me there but still it was a heated battle until the end. I tried to find an opening but it was hard being so close together.”
Maltais dominated her earlier quarterfinal and semifinal runs.
”I really wanted to show my speed,” said the 2006 Olympic bronze medallist. ”I wasn’t happy about by preliminary run yesterday (Friday) so I kicked myself a bit and tried to keep the focus on the positive. I knew I could be better and I knew I had the ability to win this race.”
Helene Olafsen of Norway was third in the four-woman Big Final while Olympic champion Maelle Ricker of Squamish, B.C., fell early on and took fourth spot.
“A fourth place was a great result today,” said Ricker, in her first World Cup race this season. “The whole team is very well prepared and the course conditions today were outstanding. Unfortunately I made an error in the Big Final when things got tight early in the race.”
In men’s competition, Jarryd Hugues of Australia won gold with Konstantin Schad of Austria second and Alex Deibold of the U.S., third.
Christopher Robanske of Calgary, the top qualifier Friday, and Robert Fagan of Squamish were both eliminated in the quarterfinals for 13th and 14th and Kevin Hill of Vernon, B.C., was bounced in the first playoff round for 23rd.