Whistler, British Columbia (Jan. 16) – Seth Wescott (Farmington, ME) and Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton, VT) scored their first snowboardcross World Championships titles in Whistler, B.C., Sunday, while fellow U.S. Snowboarding team rider Jayson Hale (Sierraville, CA) made the day triple sweet with bronze. The USA has already surpassed its medal count from the 2003 Snowboard World Championships in Austria, where Wescott grabbed silver in SBX and halfpipe rider Steve Fisher won bronze.
Wescott had a rough go of it at last weekend’s Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix in Mount Bachelor, Oregon. The snowboardcross gods were not smiling upon him when, “In the first round I was landed on. The crash stretched the MCL in my left knee and my right shin was sliced open, said Westcott. “It loosened up enough that I was finally able to walk normally on Friday. I took all week off and focused my energy positively. It’s not good, but it’s good enough.
Good enough to be crowned snowboardcross World Champion. In its first stop on North American soil in the championship’s ten-year history, Wescott led every heat and made a critical pass in the round of eight in his quest and ultimate triumph for gold.
Hale earned his bronze in the brutal day-long battle. His challenges included running his final three heats with Wescott and being roughed up by the gigantic Alex Maier of Austria. If that name seems familiar, it probably is. His brother – the “Herminator – is one of the best ski racers on the planet. “He passed me, but he crashed and I ran him over, said Hale.
Jacobellis led her heats all day to deliver her first World Championships win for U.S. Snowboarding. Last weekend at the Grand Prix at Mt. Bachelor she picked up silver in SBX and gold in halfpipe.
“It was long and tiresome, but the Bachelor course was long so that helps. I did well in the jumps and used the transitions well. My best part was out of the gate and at the top. Tomorrow I plan to hang out and sleep and then freeride and see the mountain. As the World champ she has earned the right, don’t'cha think? Look for her to compete in the halfpipe event here on Saturday. She is one of the few multi-discipline riders and always a podium contender.
Head Coach Peter Foley adds, “I love Whistler, I’ve always loved Whistler. This is unreal. I live a charmed life! So that’s what having the job security of producing two World Champions feels like.
FIS SNOWBOARD WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
Whistler, B.C. – January 16, 2005
1. Seth Wescott, Farmington, Maine
2. Francois Bovin, Canada
3. Jayson Hale, Sierraville, Calif.
4. Michael Layer, Germany
5. Marco Huser, Switzerland
1. Lindsey Jacobellis, Stratton, Vt.
2. Karine Ruby, France
3. Maelle Ricker, Canada
4. Dominique Maltais, Canada
5. Carmen Raniglerm, Italy