Mogul skiers sweep Lake Placid

The Canadian Freestyle Ski Team had another hugely successful day in FIS World Cup mogul action here today with four podium finishes, and a total of eight top-ten finishes in the men’s and women’s events.

Mikael Kingsbury (Deux Montagnes, Que.) and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe (Montreal, Que.) took silver medals while Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau (Drummondville, Que) and Kristi Richards (Summerland, B.C.) both finished in third spot.

After a tough day yesterday where he lost his ski in qualifications due to an equipment malfunction, Kingsbury rebounded today with a score of 25.59. He was joined on the podium by teammate and team veteran Rousseau at 25.16. France’s Guilbaut Colas solidified his lead in the World Cup overall standings with his second win in two days.

Colas’ 25.70 score broke a possible Canadian sweep, as Canadians Marc-Antoine Gagnon (Terrebonne, Que.) and Cedric Rochon (St. Sauveur, Que) took the fourth and fifth positions with respective scores of 24.69 and 24.38

It was Kingsbury’s fourth medal of the season. He said, “I got over my disappointment of my binding popping off yesterday by just telling myself that I know what to do and I just have to focus on my run and the good results will come.”

But Rousseau had another idea about his and Kingsbury’s success. He said, “Mik and I rode the chair together just before finals, like we did in China when he won his first World Cup and I came third. Now we have a date on the chairlift at World’s in February.”

Rousseau, who is 31, is also having a very successful season amidst his team, many of whom are at least a decade his junior. He said, “It’s pretty cool to hang out with these young guys. I’m training smart and using my experience and my feel for the bumps after so many years to my advantage.”

Other Canadian men’s results included Olympic Champion Alex Bilodeau (Montreal, Que) in 11th, who failed to finish his finals run after taking too much speed and losing control. Eddie Hicks of Langley, B.C. just narrowly missed making it to the 12-man final and finished the day in 13th spot at 22.75.

At 26.12, Hannah Kearney of the USA took the top spot for the second day in a row, breaking a possible Canadian sweep in the women’s event. Chloe Dufour-Lapointe (Montreal, Que.) was second at 24.85, earning her second career podium. Richards took the bronze at 24.57, and Jenn Heil (Spruce Grove, Alta) was fourth at 23.99.

Dufour-Lapointe said, “I’m so happy and excited about what I did today. I think it was my big jumps and my fast skiing, the overall package, that helped me do what I had to do today.”

Dufour-Lapointe’s sister, Justine, who was the fastest woman in qualifications, finished the day in 10th at 21.60 after taking a little too much speed in her final run.

Canadian woman who did not make finals were: Maxime Dufour-Lapointe in 13th at 20.93, Chelsea Henitiuk (Spruce Grove, Alta) in 21st at 18.94 and yesterday’s bronze medal winner, Audrey Robichaud (Quebec City) was 26th at 17.18.

Today’s results rounded out a seven medal weekend for the Canadian Freestyle Ski Team. They compete at home in Calgary at the Canada Post Grand Prix at Winsport’s Canada Olympic Park on January 29.