Jeudi 12 décembre
Samedi 14 décembre
Marielle Thompson (CAN) et Ryan Regez (SUI) s'imposent
Voici le communiqué de presse officiel :
A big question mark was hovering over the start of the third race of the Cross Alps Tour, since snow, rain, fog, wind and all kinds of different weather conditions were challenging organizers to get everything ready for the scheduled competition.
In the end, it was possible to get the first heat started with a slight time delay of 10 minutes. The race was for sure not an easy one, but everybody had to face the same weather challenges today on that shortened course in Montafon.
The ones on the women’s side handling those conditions best and advancing into the big final were Canada’s Marielle Thompson,
who also clocked the fastest time in the qualification, Sandra Naeslund (SWE), Courtney Hoffos (CAN), who had already managed to get two podium spots this season, and for the first time getting a spot in the final heat was Sweden’s Alexandra Edebo.
Fanny Smith, winner of the last race in Val Thorens last week, had some mistakes along the way and made it into the small final and on to the seventh place.
As for the big final, Thompson had a great start, getting into first spot right away, Naeslund however was super close, trying to pass the Canadian, however it seemed that Thompson’s skis were just the faster ones today.
Hoffos had the weakest start of all four, falling behind right away, but a big mistake by Edebo gave Hoffos the space to pass and get into third position.
The heat went down like this until the finish line and Thompson took her first win of the season.
Almost no one could believe that in time for the men’s final there was a blue sky and sunshine coming through to light up the course.
The final heat of the day was going down with Swiss athlete Ryan Regez performing at his best today, winning every single one of his heats, the Canadian duo Brady Leman and last race’s winner Kris Mahler, as well as Terence Tchiknavorian from France.
The tall Swiss got the quickest start out of the gate, validating his ticket for the first spot of the heat, Brady Leman getting in second and Mahler in third, leaving the Frenchman behind.
Regez just made clear that it was his day and stayed as the leader of the heat until the very bottom, Mahler managed to pass his teammate Leman and to get into second position.
The two Canadians did have a close fight until the finish, but Mahler was the faster one and after last week’s win, he repeated his visit on to the podium, only in second position, Leman in third and edging Tchicknavorian off the podium.
Sandra Naeslund is keeping her Cross Alps Tour leaderbib and getting yet again one step closer to that CAT hat-trick she has set as a goal for herself this season.
On the men’s side of things, the leaderbib stays in the Canadian team, however is now on Kris Mahler instead of Kevin Drury.
Things now need to get packed up rather quickly, since the next race of the Cross Alps Tour is already on Tuesday, Dec 17, which will be a night time sprint event format, broadcast live on primetime television.
Photo : FIS