Stephane Rochon of St-Sauveur, Quebec, was fourth in the World Cup moguls at Madonna Di Campiglio, Italy Saturday, Dec. 14.
Rochon is no stranger to the finals but it was the first time he had cracked the top-12 in three events this season. Two other rookies, Warren Tanner of Grimsby, Ontario, and Stephanie St. Pierre, Quebec also managed to crack the top-12 for the first time in their careers.
While nobody is coming home with a medal, the results in Italy represent a different kind of landmark for the Canadian team. This is the first time that every one of the members of the freestyle moguls team, male and female, has qualified for the finals in the same season. And the season is just getting started.
"Thats really cool," said the 28-year-old Rochon, remarking on the depth of the team. "All the young guns coming on the team are making the finals. Thats good for our sport in Canada."
Tanner was 10th in the qualification round, and placed ninth in the finals.
In the womens competition, St. Pierre was also ninth.
Toby Dawson of the U.S. was first, followed by Mikko Ronkainen of Finland and Travis Mayer of the U.S. Rochons score was just 0.04 points back of Mayer.
For Tanner, who is 22, making the finals was the victory on Saturday.
"Its a step up for sure," he said. "This is my first final, first of many, and kind of a message that here I am and I belong."
Scott Bellavance of Prince George, who is coming off of back-to-back silver medals, finished 22 nd . Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau was 16 th and rookie Chris Wong of Prince George was 20 th .
St. Pierre, who is only 17, was also excited with her finish.
"Im so happy, it was the greatest day of my life," she said. "I didnt ski as well as I could, especially with my jumps, but Im really happy with my first final. It means a lot for me."
The other Canadians were Elisa Kurylowicz of Manotick, Ontario in 13 th , and Tami Bradley of Vancouver in 16 th .
The day went to Shannon Bahrke of the U.S., followed by Ingrid Bernsten of Norway and Kari Traa of Norway.
The moguls season continued this week with competitions in Finland on Thursday and Friday.