A victory, two globes for Mikaël Kingsbury
Vancouver, March 18, 2023 – Mikaël Kingsbury has proven once again that he’s the best freestyle skier on the planet. At the last World Cup of the season in Almaty (Kazakhstan) Saturday, the Quebecer won the parallel event, in duel against Walter Wallberg of Sweden. Australian Matt Graham completed the podium.
With this victory, Kingsbury gets to take home two more pieces of crystal: the crystal globe for the specialty competition, and also the larger globe for winning the overall moguls ranking. Yesterday with his individual victory, the 30-year-old secured another globe in singles – will Kingsbury have enough space in his luggage?
Last season, the moguls magician also won the triple globe.
“My 23rd, 24th and 80th World Cup victories,” noted the champion of the day, smiling and proudly holding up his two globes, post-ceremony.
“Being in the final against Walter in the duel, I couldn’t ask for more! It’s fun to end the season with a win. Now it’s time to rest. A big thank you to my team, my sponsors, and everyone who has supported me this season, and during this incredible year!”
On Saturday, Kingsbury first defeated South Korea’s Daeyoon Jung in the round of 16. Once in the quarter-finals, the famed Canuck defeated American Nick Page, and then faced Matt Graham in the semi-finals.
Fellow Team Canada skier Elliot Vaillancourt had a strong showing and finished his day in fifth place – matching his best World Cup result – after being eliminated by the eventual bronze medalist.
Quebec’s Gabriel Dufresne and Julien Viel both were halted in the round of 16, and finished the day in 10th and 13th place respectively.
No Canadian women took part in the women’s competition, where Perrine Laffont (France) bested American Jaelin Kauf in the grand final.
Megan Oldham takes bronze at Tignes Slopestyle
Meanwhile at the World Cup slopestyle event in Tignes (French Alps), Megan Oldham (90.00) earned herself a bronze medal to take home. The Ontario native finished the competition behind Swiss national and World Champion Mathilde Gremaud (96.25), and Norway’s Johanne Killi (95.25).
Oldham excelled in her first of two runs in the final. She was very clean on the first two jumps and on the rails, then loss her balance a little bit on the back landing of the last jump, but her hands didn’t touch the ground – all of which meant she was provisionally second in the standings.
The world runner-up in the event then went for her second and final run through the course, but fell when trying to land a jump.
“My landings were all clean on my first run, but my grab was iffy on the first jump – kinda borderline. Still, this is the best season of my career and I’m very happy with the way I skied this year,” remarked Oldham.
This is Oldham’s second World Cup podium this season, after winning the Copper Mountain Big Air in December. The 21-year-old skier also did the double in slopestyle, and Big Air at the prestigious X-Games in Aspen earlier this season.
British Columbia’s Brynn Johnston was the first to miss the cut-off for a spot in the finals and finished the day in 11th place; Alberta’s Rylee Hackler finished 18th.
Next week Oldham heads to Silvaplana, Switzerland, for the final Slopestyle World Cup of the season.
“This year’s battle for the crystal globe is fierce, because the rankings leader has won three World Cups and finished second today (Saturday). She’ll be hard to catch, but I do have a chance to get on the final podium. My two X-Games gold medals don’t count in the standings, but I’m happy to have them.”
In the men’s competition, Evan McEachran (82.25) and Max Moffatt (64.25) finished in 10th and 13th place respectively.
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