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Canada kicking some butt

So many medals, so few days. Go Canada go!


By Maëlle Ricker

Despite the atrocious weather conditions, the event is still going off. Whistler is putting on a fantastic competition and is letting the world know we are ready for 2010.

Backing Whistler’s event is a bunch of Canadians who are kicking some serious butt and pulling in medals of all colours. Canada has a gold, a silver, a bronze, and a fourth after only two events.

The snowboardcross race was more than exciting on Sunday. Oodles of room to pass and the smooth flow of the course made the event incredible. I had the opportunity to be a part of it all.

Saturday was time trials. I woke up early and went to the gym to warm up. My nerves were already stirring me up quite nicely. Breakfast was tough – let’s just say the oatmeal was less than desirable. I had to eat quite a bit though because I knew there wouldn’t be much time to eat again until after the event, so I gulped it down and headed to the hill for training.

We got two timed runs in the course and only our fastest time counted for Sunday’s race, with only the top 16 girls and 32 boys qualifying for the finals.

My first run was great. Everything went well except for the air to the finish where I got off balance and fell. I rode a slightly faster second run and didn’t fall.

My teammate Dominique Maltais was great. She won the qualifying round with her first run time. Erin Simmons also qualified in the girls event. All four boys made it into the top 32 as well. Jasey-Jay Anderson was second, Francois Boivin qualified fifth, Rob Fagan came ninth, and Tom Velisek was 22 nd .

Sunday came quickly. I had been thinking about that day for a few months and it was finally here.

Another early warm up at the gym and another huge helping of questionable oatmeal got me started.

I went up to the course and watched the guys run the top section to see the fastest line. I also took a couple of warm-up runs myself and then had JP Trottier, our wax tech, put some finishing touches on my board.

Two heats later and one seriously bad start put me in the finals. In the semi-finals I got lucky and managed to pass two girls who were tangled up in a corner.

For the last run I was in the start gate with three amazing competitors, including my teammate Dom Maltais. The gate dropped and we were off. We all jockeyed into position by the first bank turn. I was sitting in third. Darn! But I had plenty of room to pass ahead so I kept calm and tried to focus on having a clean run. However, on one of the straight sections I was passed by Karine Ruby of France. I tried to reel her back in.

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