After devoting the last few months to intensive training, Freestyle Canada’s slopestyle team heads to Austria, where the athletes will continue the season that opened last August in New Zealand. Their next competitive event takes place from November 24 to 26.
The world’s top freestyle athletes will convene at Stubai Zoo Snow Park in Austria for what will be the first-ever FIS World Cup event for Stubai. With less than three months to go before the Olympic Games in PyeongChang, this competition will be one of the last chances the athletes have to quality for a spot in the world’s foremost sports competition. Those who make it to the podium in Stubai will have the best chances of being named to the Olympic team.
For Quebecer Alex Beaulieu-Marchand, who appears to be well on his way to sealing a spot with Team Canada following a third-place win in slopestyle at the FIS World Cup in Quebec and a bronze medal at the Aspen X Games, the objective as the season begins is to fine-tune his runs. “I prepared for the season by working to stay on top form. I’ve had pretty good results already so my goal is to keep fit and practice tricks to ensure a win,” says the athlete, who realized a dream last year when he snagged a podium spot in Aspen with a score of 92.00. The skier, whose creative grabs and spins make him easily recognizable on the slopes, has a few new cards up his sleeve. “For sure I’d like to do a few triple flips in the events ahead of the Olympics,” he says. “I also want to continue perfecting the moves that would help boost my score.”
For her part, Sotchi bronze medallist Kim Lamarre has spent the last few weeks refining her jumps on the airbag at iMaximise. “At our training camp in Switzerland, I found a few areas that needed improvement in my jumps, so I decided to work on the airbag to do some tweaking. It paid off, because now my reflexes are good. I feel optimistic as we approach the first World Cup,” says the athlete from Lac Beauport, who has her sights set on the PyeongChang Winter Games. “For sure my objective this year is to make it to the Olympics, but before that, my goal is to land in competition the run I practiced at iMaximise, because I’m pretty sure that it will earn me podium spots. I want to bounce back this year and have my strongest season since 2013-2014.”
The following athletes will be in Stubai:
Men: Alex Beaulieu-Marchand (Quebec CIty, QC), Alex Bellemare (St-Boniface, QC), Evan McEachran (Oakville, ON), Teal Harle (Campbell River, BC), Noah Morrison (Vernon, BC), Philippe Langevin (Mont-Tremblant, QC), Patrick Dew (Vernon, BC), Max Moffat (Caledon, ON)
Upcoming events (December)
- FIS World Cup – December 6-8: Copper Mountain, Halfpipe
- Dew Tour – December 14-17: Breckenridge, Slopestyle
- FIS World Cup – December 16-17: Secret Garden, Aerials
- FIS World Cup – December 21-22: Thaiwoo, Moguls