Michalchuk fifth in pipe, Ricker sixth in snowboard cross
Jasey Jay Anderson of St-Jovite, Quebec, just may be the best alpine snowboarder in the world right now, earning back to back gold medals in the snowboard cross and parallel giant slalom events in Sapporo-Makomanai, Japan on Feb. 16 and 17.
The 25 year old has been the star attraction on the national team all season, earning numerous alpine and SBX World Cup podiums and winning the world championship giant slalom in Italy. He is currently ranked second on the SBX points list, and top ten in all the Alpine events.
And hes so humble about it. "It must be in my legs," Anderson told reporters after winning the SBX. "A lot of it is being aggressive, not being afraid, being able to control a snowboard properly. Ive put in so many miles and turns, I cant even count them."
When he won the parallel slalom, he said "I had a lot of fun today, but it was a lot of work also. The one I always have to fear most is myself. If I put in my best run I know Ill come out of it happy but it was a struggle today to make perfect runs."
Sterner Magnus of Sweden finished in second in the SBX, followed by John Fletcher of Australia.
In the womens SBX, Juliane Bray of New Zealand was the top rider, followed by Doris Guenther of Austria and Nathalie Desmares of France. Whistlers Maelle Ricker was the top Canadian in sixth place. Dominuqe Vallee and Josiane Bruneau finished 14 th and 17 th respectively.
Daniel Biveson of Sweden came the closest to catching Anderson in the parallel giant slalom, followed by American Chris Klug. The womens parallel giant slalom went to Steffi Von Sebenthal of Switzerland, followed by Margherita Parini of Italy and Manuela Rigler of Austria. Helene Cloutier was the top Canadian in 19 th .
In the halfpipe event, local Mike Michalchuk finished fifth, earning valuable points and getting a lot closer to a berth in the 2002 Winter Olympics. Heikki Sorsa of Finland won the contest, followed by Tommy Czeschin of the U.S., and Markus Jonsson of Sweden.
In the womens halfpipe, Kelly Clark of the U.S. was first, followed by Lesley McKenna of Great Britain and Doriane Vidal of France. Maelle Ricker was the top Canadian in 12 th . Lori Glazier finished 17 th , Kim Dunn 20 th , Dominique Vallee 24 th and Josiane Bruneau 26 th .
The World Cup circuit continues in Japan this weekend with halfpipe, parallel giant slalom, and snowboardcross events at Asahikawa outside of Nagano.