Junior Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Champions continue

The second week of the FIS Junior Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships in Cardrona Alpine Resort (NZL) continued with action and big performances en masse. The competitions continued with slopestyle and halfpipe, while the alpine snowboarders started with the parallel giant slalom. 

Slopestyle

FIS Junior World Championship titles in slopestyle were awarded on the eighth day of competition at the Audi quattro Winter Games NZ with Kelly Sildaru (EST) and Oliwer Magnusson (SWE) taking home gold medals. On the ladies’ side, Anastasia Tatalina (RUS) claimed silver with Kokone Kondo (JPN) in bronze. In the men’s field, Sebastian Schjerve (NOR) was second and Kim Gubser (SUI) third.  

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The Snowboard slopestyle finals took place under sunny skies  and the Japanese tandem of Kokomo Murase and Takeru Otsuka each claimed their second gold medals of the week.  Silver went to Germany’s Annika Morgan while Canada’s Sommer Gendron ended up less than half a point behind Morgan with bronze. Over on the men’s side, Otsuka faced down a stiff challenge from Niek Ven Der Velden (NED). Capping off an impressive day on the slopes for one of the flattest nations on earth was a bronze medal win by Van Der Velden’s teammate Casper Wolf.

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Halfpipe 

New Zealand skier Nico Porteous capped off an epic 2018 season, claiming the FIS Junior Freeski halfpipe World Championships 2018 title on his home. Dylan Ladd (USA) came through with a big score in the last run, pushing Birk Ruud (NOR) to third.

The top qualifier in the ladies freeski halfpipe, Kelly Sildaru (EST) faced a strong challenge by Valeriya Demidova (RUS) who showed excellent trick variety and execution. However, no one looked more at home in the pipe nor matched the amplitude, grabs and trick execution of Sildaru and she led the field on all three of her runs, finishing her day as the FIS Junior World halfpipe Champion. Kexin Zhang (CHN) claimed the bronze medal.

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The park and pipe portion of the Cardrona 2018 FIS Junior Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships concluded with thrilling Snowboard halfpipe competitions, where Mitsuki Ono (JPN) claimed the fifth gold medal of the Championships for the Japanese snowboard team on the ladies’ side, and the USA’s Toby Miller stepped up to claim a long-awaited gold in his final JWC appearance.  

Tessa Maud (USA) was the second-place finisher and Elizabeth Hosking (CAN) claimed the bronze medal in the ladies’ event, while on the men’s side the silver and bronze went to Ruka Hiranro (JPN) and Kaishu Hirano (JPN).

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Parallel Giant Slalom

The penultimate competition of the Cardrona 2018 FIS Junior Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships saw Alpine snowboarding taking to the gates for parallel giant slalom action, with Russia ruling the day by taking five of the six medals, including golds for Milena Bykova and Dmitry Loginov. 

Silver went to Gong Naiying (CHN), who became her nation’s first-ever medal winner in a Junior World Championships parallel event, while bronze went to Bykova’s countrywoman Maria Valova. 

On the men’s side, this was the second time any nation has swept the podium in Junior World Championship parallel competition, as Russia’s Dmitriy Karlagachev claimed silver and Ilia Vitugov took the bronze and repeated a feat already shown by teammates Valery Kolegov, Dmitrij Taimulin and Dmitrij Bojko in 2012. 

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The Cardrona 2018 FIS Junior Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships conclude with the parallel slalom.