Ottawa's Hannah Schmidt Rules Ski Cross For 2nd Straight Day, Winning 4-Woman Final | CBC Sports

Hannah Schmidt has won her second World Cup ski cross in as many days, finishing first in her four-woman final for the second straight day at Alberta’s Nakiska Ski Resort. Canada’s men had a tough day with none making the final.

Fellow Canadian Phelan 3rd in Nakiska, Alta., while no men’s teammates made finalDonna Spencer · The Canadian Press

· Posted: Jan 21, 2024 4:44 PM EST | Last Updated: January 21

Canada’s Hannah Schmidt celebrates her victory on the podium following the women’s World Cup ski cross event in Kananaskis, Alta., on Sunday. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)Hannah Schmidt doubled her World Cup ski cross victories at Nakiska Ski Resort on Sunday.

The 29-year-old from Ottawa parlayed powerful starts out of the gates and over the opening rollers to World Cup wins both Saturday and Sunday at the Alberta resort west of Calgary.

“I’m kind of speechless to be honest,” Schmidt said Sunday. “I wasn’t expecting it. I don’t think anyone expects to do it twice in a row. It’s hard racing out there. A good start means the world and I had good starts again today.”

WATCH | Schmidt continues torrid pace in women’s ski cross at Nakiska:

Hannah Schmidt captures back-to-back World Cup ski cross wins at NakiskaAnother World Cup ski cross gold medal at Nakiska Sunday for Ottawa’s Hannah Schmidt after winning Saturday’s race, she shared the podium with teammate Brittany Phelan who claimed bronze.

Schmidt’s two victories — the second and third of her career — vaulted her into second in the season’s overall women’s World Cup standings behind Marielle Berger Sabbatel.

The Frenchwoman finished second Sunday behind Schmidt. Britt Phelan of Mont-Tremblant, Que., placed third.

The host team accrued five medals over two days in the season’s lone Canadian stop on the World Cup ski cross circuit.

Reece Howden of Cultus Lake, B.C., claimed men’s gold Saturday and Marielle Thompson of Whistler, B.C., finished second behind Schmidt in the women’s final.

Rocky day for Canadian menBut it was a rocky Sunday for the Canadian men as none made the final four. Schmidt’s younger brother Jared maintained his lead in the men’s overall standings, but he was eliminated in the quarterfinal after tangling with teammate Carson Cook for position and crashing.

The top two in each heat advanced through the men’s round of 32 and men’s and women’s quarterfinals and semifinals.

The skiers were more aggressive attempting passes Sunday than Saturday on Nakiska’s 1.2-kilometre track. Sunday’s races were held under partly sunny skies and a temperature just below freezing.

There were several bumps and spills in what’s known as the NASCAR of ski racing.

‘See you in the final’But Phelan, an Olympic silver medallist in 2018, cleanly executed passes in her semifinal to qualify and also in the women’s final to move from fourth into podium position.

“I told Hannah before our first heat ‘see you in the final’ and it was awesome,” Phelan said. “To get there wasn’t easy. Today, I had to battle in every run.”

She’s overcome a pair of knee injuries and a torn Achilles tendon over the last three years.

“The last four years through injury, every time I’ve come back and got onto the podium pretty quick,” Phelan said. “So that’s very validating and a bit relieving to know that it’s all still there. There’s still a ton of work to do. Hannah was on another level this race and all season too.”

WATCH | Schmidt wins 2nd race of season:

Canada’s Schmidt gold, Thompson silver at World Cup ski cross race at NakiskaHannah Schmidt claimed her second World Cup ski cross win of the season, and teammate Marielle Thompson took the silver Saturday in Kananaskis, Alberta.

Thompson was on the wrong end of a battle for position with Switzerland’s Fanny Smith in their Sunday semifinal. Thompson, the 2014 women’s Olympic gold medallist, recovered to handily win the “small final” for fifth place.

Edmonton’s Cook was on the verge of reaching his first men’s final this season, but clipped the ski of German front-runner Florian Wilmsmann heading into his semifinal’s last jump.

Cook spun horizontally in the air and landed on his stomach while Youri Duplessis Kergomard of France overtook him to advance.

Lenherr wins men’s eventSwitzerland’s Jonas Lenherr was the men’s winner Sunday, ahead of runner-up Wilmsmann and Duplessis Kergomard in third. Cook was the top Canadian man in eighth.

“We’re always expecting podiums with this team and it’s sometimes disappointing when we don’t get at least one guy and one of the girls on the podium, but the girls had an unbelievable day,” Canadian coach Stan Hayer said. “Hannah is on fire.

“Home events are tricky. There’s a different energy. Off the hill, it’s a little bit more chaotic and it seems a little bit too much because when we’re in our own little bubble in Europe, we’re just a team travelling around.

“This is a pretty crazy sport so I’m glad we walked away with five podiums this weekend.”

Canada’s ski cross team heads to St. Moritz, Switzerland for the next World Cup on Sunday.

WATCH | Full replay of Sunday’s World Cup ski cross races:

FIS Freestyle Skiing World Cup Nakiska: Ski crossWatch day two of FIS freestyle skiing World Cup ski cross races from Kananaskis, Alberta.

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