Team claims seven podiums in five events
You can say what you want about home advantage, but snow is snow and the Canadian snowboarders have shown once again that they can jump it, ride it, and carve it as well as if not better than anyone else.
Over five Nokia FIS Snowboard World Cup competitions in Whistler this past week, the Canadian snowboard team came up huge with seven medals and dozens of top 10 performances.
Snowboard Cross Dec. 6
One of the best things about snowboard cross is that anything can happen. That also happens to be one of the worst things.
Despite the fact that they were out front of the competition all day, Canadians Drew Nielson and Jasey Jay Anderson had to settle for fourth and fifth place overall, after contact with the other racers in the upper part of the course. In both cases the judges ruled that the contact, which is inevitable when four World Cup snowboarders try to grab the fastest line down the course, was incidental.
"Unfortunately its part of boardercross," said Anderson, who was taken out of the finals after crashing into Pontus Stahlkloo of Sweden in the semi-finals.
"I had to pass on the inside and I had to nudge him off the course to do this line, and he didnt like it, he beat Drew to the panel and he hit me in the air, causing me to cartwheel down the slope. Even if they (disqualified) him, I couldnt make it to the finals because I flew off of the course.
"Its disappointing obviously, but you dont race to win every day, it cant happen. Especially in a sport like boardercross or parallel, because you rely on other people so much that what you do is inconsequential some times."
Two false starts at the gate, one in the round of eight and the other in the semi-finals, meant Anderson had to make an extra two runs through the course.
Frustrated, Anderson destroyed the competition in the Small Final to take fifth overall.
"Does is vindicate? Just a little bit. I just kind of put my foot down and didnt let people roll over me. I guess it was maybe my own little personal statement to myself.
"I did my job, I did well in the races, I just got unlucky near the end, and now I have to move on."
Although some of the events are clean and orderly, Anderson said the difference in course conditions and officiating is so varied from place to place that snowboard cross hasnt proved that it can be an Olympic sport just yet. On the other hand, any attempt to clean up the sport could ruin it.