BRADY LEMAN RACES TO THIRD WORLD CUP PODIUM OF THE SEASON IN SUNNY VALLEY, RUSSIA
Leman adds another bronze to 2018-19 medal-haul
Sunny Valley, RUS (Feb. 24, 2019) – Canada’s Brady Leman (Calgary/Calgary Alpine Racing Club) battled to bronze in ski cross race action on Sunday, stepping onto the World Cup podium for the third time this season.
The 2019 FIS Freestyle Ski Cross World Championships’ silver-medallist earned his first World Cup medal of the season in late December in Innichen, Italy, capturing bronze, before racing to gold on home snow at Blue Mountain, Ont., in January.
“It was a tough day of racing for sure. All day, every round was a battle to get through,” said Leman, who was second in every heat leading up to the final. He was joined on the podium by France’s Bastien Midol, who won his second gold medal in as many days, and Alex Fiva of Switzerland, who raced to silver. “It was a tough round in the final for sure – some really fast skiers – so I was really happy to be third.”
The men’s team saw a rally of sorts following a tough day of racing on Saturday that saw them all out after one heat. Toronto’s Kevin Drury clawed his way to sixth, while Chris Del Bosco (Montreal and Vail, Col./Ski and Snowboard Club Vail) finished eighth to tie his season-best result.
Racing in her first big final of the season, India Sherret (Cranbrook, B.C./Kimberley Alpine Team) fell just short of a podium performance, finishing fourth in ladies’ action at Sunny Valley.
“I felt like I had really good starts today. I was pulling out feeling super strong, really like myself – strong, confident, and not thinking too much when I was skiing,” said Sherret, whose previous best this season are two eighth-place finishes – one of which was earned in Sunny Valley on Saturday. “In the final, I had a really good start and kind of just drifted out in the first turn, and just couldn’t quite pull them in at the finish. But I’m really, really happy with how today went – I just had so much fun, and had the biggest smile on my face. I couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Sherret nearly didn’t get into the big final; she thought she was destined for another small final following a brief fall in the semifinal heat, but was able to move into second when two other races got tangled up on course.
Marielle Thompson (Whistler, B.C./Whistler Mountain Ski Club) – Saturday’s fourth-place finisher – wasn’t so lucky. Coming into the third turn in the semifinal, she set up to make a pass into second, but found herself on the wrong side of a crash by French skier Marielle Berger Sabbatel. Thompson finished the day in seventh, and was joined in the top-10 by Brittany Phelan (Mont-Tremblant, Que./Mont-Tremblant Ski Club) and Kelsey Serwa (Kelowna, B.C./Big White Ski Club) who placed ninth and 10th respectively. Abby McEwen (Edmonton/Sunridge Ski Club) was 16th.
Fanny Smith took back-to-back gold in Russia, standing on the podium on Sunday alongside teammate Sanna Luedi, who finished second. France’s Alizee Baron was third.
Full results can be found at FIS-SKI.com.