Snowboard Cross World Cup comes down the stretch
As last discipline of the FIS Snowboard World Cup tour the international snowboard cross series will run its last races of the season in the up-coming week.
On March 10 and 11, 2014, Veysonnaz, Switzerland, will host the single race which was cancelled last January. Just a few days later, on March 14 and 15, 2014, the SBX season's finals and thus the showdown for the Crystal Globes will take place in La Molina, Spain,
After four out of six single races, Dominique Maltais (CAN, 3,400) and Omar Visintin (ITA, 2,426) hold all the aces in the battle for the highly coveted hardware.
Both World Cup leaders have already gained a comfortable lead over their pursuers and could clinch the title with a win in Veysonnaz.
However, the two racers will enter the last two comps from different angles.
Maltais, the odds-on title favourite who came out of Sochi 2014 with the silver medal, can aim for her fourth consecutive and fifth career Crystal Globe.
For Visintin, things are less certain, as the pressure will be on to see if he can finish the best season of his career in the same way he started it.
The 24-year-old South Tyrolean, who finished last season as third of the SBX World Cup standings, bruised his hip pretty bad in a crash during the semi finals at Sochi and has just been back on snow recently.
His main rivals in the title race are rising star Jarryd Hughes (AUS, 1,850) and Stian Sivertzen (NOR, 1,470).
But also Trevor Jacob (USA, 1,296), Lucas Eguibar (SPA, 1,282) and Konstantin Schad (GER, 1,254) can still get their hopes up reasonably sitting in fourth, fifth and sixth position of the current World Cup standings.
On the women's side of things, Maltais only has to hold Lindsey Jacobellis (USA, 2,560) and 2014 Olympic Champion Eva Samkova (CZE, 2,360) at bay after fourth ranked rider Helene Olafsen's season came to an early end when the Norwegian injured her knee during the Olympic seeding runs.
Alexandra Jekova (BUL, 1,800), who finished in fifth position at Sochi, has only theoretical chances to bring home the Crystal Globe.
The current World Cup Standings: