In a lighter day for Canadian individual team sports at the 29th Winter Universiade, Canada produced two Top 30 performances in the sixth day of competition. Jean-Christopher Allard (Laval; Drummondville, Que.) finished in 27th place while Alexandre Fortin (Laval; Quebec City, Que.) placed 30th against a field of 82 skiers in the men’s alpine giant slalom event.
At Funpark Bobrovy Log, the Canadian men’s team was back in action after two days off and with the wind in their face, produced two solid Top 30 finishes.
For Allard this was his second Top 30 result at this Universiade after being 26th in the men’s alpine combined slalom. Fortin had his best result so far in Russia as he earlier was 37th in combined slalom. Félix Blanchard (Montreal; Montreal, Que.) also raced but had a did not finish result in this event.
Cross Country Skiing
At Raduga Cluster, the Canadian cross country team had to battle weather conditions plus a broken pole for one of the team as the competed in the mixed team sprint event. Canada had two teams in action as both raced in the semi-final heat bud did not advance to the finals after Canada 2 (Marianne Scherrer, Laval; Quebec City, Que., Matjaz Cigler, Alberta; Toronto, Ont.) team finished in 13th place while Canada 1 (Ember Large, MacEwan; Edmonton, Alta., Alexander Maycock Nipissing; Orangeville, Ont.) placed 14th.
Even more remarkable was Canada 2 lost a pole along the first lap and had to make up time on the field for the rest of the race. “On the first lap I was coming around the corner and someone stepped on pole and it snapped in half. I had to climb the big hill without a pole until I got another one. It was annoying but I kept at it. Made the most of it and it was fun, “ described Cigler who had to ski with the pole disadvantage.
Maycock followed up with the how the race went, “Really fast and icy conditions. We had had some rock hard tracks so we had some strong guides. The wax tech nailed it today and skied against a tough field.”
As a side note, a rumour had it that of a nice sportsperson moment occurred on the race course as the Russian skier could have lapped an USA athlete on the last lap and prevented them from finishing the course. He decided to graciously slow up to allow the USA to complete the event.
TEAM CANADA RESULTS FROM FRIDAY, MARCH 8, 2019
Men’s Giant Slalom
Finals (two heats)
- Jean-Christopher Allard, Laval; Drummondville, Que., 2:01.30
- Alexandre Fortin, Laval; Quebec City, Que., 2:02.59
DNF Félix Blanchard, Montreal; Montreal, Que., DNF
CROSS COUNTRY SKIING
Mixed Team Sprint
Semi-Final B heat
- Canada 2 (Marianne Scherrer, Laval; Quebec City, Que. and Matjaz Cigler, Alberta; Toronto, Ont.) – did not advance to finals
- Canada 1 (Ember Large, MacEwan; Edmonton, Alta. and Alexander Maycock, Nipissing; Orangeville, Ont.) – did not advance to finals
Canada (7-2) wins 9-1 in eight ends against the Republic of Korea (6-3) in the afternoon draw; Canada has already qualified for the playoffs and finished third in the standings. They will now play Great Britain (5-4) in the #3 vs. #6 playoff game on Friday, March 8 at 9 p.m. ET (9 a.m. local time on Saturday, March 9).
Canada (6-3) wins 7-4 over China (1-8) in nine ends during the morning draw; won 9-7 over Norway (5-4) in the evening draw; team has now qualified for the playoffs as the second seed. They earned a playoff bye and will play the winner of the #3 vs. #6 match in the semi-final match on Saturday, March 9 at 4 a.m. ET (4 p.m. local time).
Canada (4-1) lost 4-2 Russia (5-0) in fifth game of Group A.; Canada advances to playoff round and will face Japan (3-2) in semi-final game on Sunday, March 10 at 4 a.m. ET (4 p.m. local time at Sever Arena.
Canada (4-0) wins 11-1 versus Sweden (0-4) in fourth game of Group B; will face Kazakhstan (4-0) on Saturday, March 9 at 4 a.m. ET (4 p.m. local time) in fifth game of Group B.