Samkova and Eguibar post best times
Eva Samkova (CZE) and Lucas Eguibar (ESP) have topped the time trials for the first event of back-to-back snowboard cross races staged in Feldberg, Germany this weekend.
Both riders dealt best with adverse weather conditions which had everything from flat lights to strong snow fall today.
And it was the fresh snow making it everything but easy for the girls who had to work and pump hard on the short but technical course to maintain the speed from top to bottom – with the result that some of the top favourites didn't even make it to tomorrow's knock out rounds.
Besides Olympic bronze medallist Chloe Trespeuch (FRA) who had podiumed twice in the sprint-format events on the Seebuck face last year, her teammates Nelly Moenne Loccoz and Manon Petit didn't survive the qualifier cut.
As a result and with Trespeuch not being able to add a lot more points in the race for the Crystal Globe, the current battle of three for the World Cup title could easily become a duel now featuring the like of best qualifier Eva Samkova (CZE) and Belle Brockhoff (AUS), the current leader of the women's standings.
However, the Olympic Champion from the Czech Republic dominated today's time trials with a 40.92 on the 620 metres long course being about one second faster than Michela Moioli (ITA; 41.87), Lindsey Jacobellis (USA; 41.94) and Brockhoff who clocked in a 41.97.
While the women's qualifications kept some surprises on hand, the men's competition saw also some of the top guns struggling – but however, not failing.
While Lucas Eguibar (ESP; 36.84), Pierre Vaultier (FRA; 36.88) as well as Michele Godino with a surprising 36.99 despite a riding mistake in turn three managed to stay under 37 seconds, the top ranked duo of the World Cup standings, Alessandro Haemmerle (AUT) and Omar Visintin (ITA) had to go into the second qualification run in order to secure their spots in the knock out finals which will feature heats of four.
The finals will be broadcasted live at 12 PM CET on Eurosport Asia 1, BNT, SFR Sport 3, Ziggo Sport Extra 2 whilst also being streamed live on cbc.ca and nbcsports.com.