Canada’s Kelsey Serwa made it a perfect two wins out of two Sunday when she led the women’s ski cross final from start to finish to secure her second World Cup victory in as many days.
The 2011 ski cross world champion and X games gold medallist from Kelowna, B.C., followed up her golden start to the season in Saturday’s race with a dominating display on Sunday, which saw her win the qualification round, the quarter-final, the semifinal and then the final.
In the men’s race, Dave Duncan, of London, Ont., narrowly missed out on securing his second podium of the weekend – after Saturday’s bronze medal – when he was caught up in a three-person crash in the final and finished fourth.
“It’s a fantastic start to the season,” said Serwa, who will be taking the red World Cup leader’s bib home with her for Christmas. “In the final I got out in front and I stayed in front all the way. I had the confidence from qualifying and the (technicians) nailed the wax once again. As soon as I started gliding, I just took off. It was great – I wish every race was like that!”
The Swiss duo of Sanna Luedi and Katrin Mueller were second and third, respectively. Georgia Simmerling, of West Vancouver, B.C., followed up her 13th-place finish in Saturday’s race – her ski cross World Cup debut – with a ninth-place result Sunday. Whistler, B.C.’s Marielle Thompson was still a little sore after crashing in Saturday’s women’s final and she finished 16th Sunday. Mariannick Therer, of Saint Sauveur, Que., was 28th in qualification and did not make it through to Sunday’s quarter-finals.
“Kelsey was on fire today,” said Eric Archer, Canada’s head coach. “She won every heat – she had a good time out there. It’s pretty big for her to get a double win on the opening weekend.”
There was fierce competition on the men’s side, where Canada had seven skiers going for gold.
Duncan, who won bronze on Saturday, looked poised to pick up his second medal of the weekend before he crashed in the men’s final. Austria’s Andreas Matt took the win, ahead of Russia’s Egor Korotkov and Switzerland’s Alex Fiva.
“We passed through the rollers and I was able to get a lead,” Duncan said of the final. “Something happened … next thing you know, there were three of us flying through the air.
“I did a quick look … and just started skiing away with one pole,” added Duncan, who suffered a minor cut to the face. “I almost caught (Fiva) at the bottom with one pole and blood on my goggles.”
Of the other Canadian men, Tristan Tafel, of Canmore, Alta., qualified for the first time at the World Cup level but was edged out in the quarter-final to finish ninth. Brian Bennett, of Quesnel, B.C., was 14th after also going out at the quarter-final stage. Nik Zoricic, of Toronto, Ont., was 21st, Whistler’s Stan Rey was 24th, world champion Chris Del Bosco, of Montreal, Que., was 26th and Saturday’s winner, Brady Leman, of Calgary, Alta., was 27th. Davey Barr, of Whistler, did not start due to a knee problem.
“It was good to get all the guys qualified,” Archer said. “And for Tristan to get to the quarter-final, that’s great.
“The start was key at this stop and Del Bosco didn’t have a good start today. He was fighting from the back.
“It was good to see a couple of the young guys doing well. You can’t win them all.”