Patient approach helps Canadian Reece Howden capture World Cup ski cross gold medal

·2 min read

IDRE FJALL, SWEDEN. — Being patient paid off handsomely for Canadian Reece Howden on Saturday.

After sitting back for most of the final, the 22-year-old from Cultus Lake, B.C., came on to capture the gold medal in a World Cup ski cross competition. It was his second World Cup win in just over a month.

Howden is accustomed to leading races but said that wasn't the idea Saturday.

“The plan was to not come out in front, the draft was too strong," he said on Alpine Canada's website. "I wanted to chill in the middle of the pack and give my legs a bit of a break and once I made that last turn fire up those engines and get out in front.

"Today was a day of racing, not a day of leading so I was super happy with my execution and it couldn’t have gone any better.”

Montreal's Chris Del Bosco of Montreal was third in the small final Saturday and seventh overall for his best finish since 2018.

"It's been a while since I've been back in the small finals," said Del Bosco, who ruptured his Achilles last summer. "It felt really good to get the monkey off my back.

"I made a few small mistakes in that last round, but I am heading in the right direction."

Tiana Gairns, of Prince George, B.C., was a career-best fifth in the women's event. Courtney Hoffos of Invermere, B.C., and Marielle Thompson of Whistler, B.C., were sixth and eighth, respectively.

"Idre is interesting since it's such a long track with such a long straight section that you don't want to pass at the beginning," Gairns said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021.

The Canadian Press