23 March 2021

Snowboarders compete for medals in halfpipe

More medals have been awarded at the FIS World Junior Champs 2021 in Krasnoyarsk. This time the athletes competed in halfpipe.

Judging by the results of the qualification, athletes from Switzerland and Japan were expected to compete in the ladies’ finals: Isabelle Loetscher and Elena Schuetz vs Manon Kaji. And the Japanese tried to upset her rivals’ plans with her first run and 91.25 points! The Swiss athletes started with good jumps, but with a clear lag: Loetscher – 83.25, Schuetz – 79.75.

The judges scored Kaji’s second run even higher – 93.50. Loetscher tried to attack, but was stopped by a regrettable fall at the bottom of the pipe.

Neither did she managed to improve her result in the third run and remained the second. Manon Kaji won gold in the end with an amazing score of 96.25 points. The bronze medal went to Elena Schuetz.

Isabelle was quite pleased with her performance: “I would be absolutely thrilled with my final run if I could have landed perfectly. But overall, everything turned out well. I am satisfied with my results, and I am very glad that I came to Krasnoyarsk and took part in the competition.” 

Although the Russians did not participate in the fight for medals, still they earned FIS points: Diana Fedchenko is the fourth, Varvara Romanova is the fifth, Yaroslava Kudryashova is the sixth.

In the men’s tournament, the qualification’s top three also turned out to be athletes from Switzerland and Japan.  Only here were two Japanese against one Swiss: Shuiсhiro Shigeno and Kaishu Nakagawa vs Jonas Hasler.

In the first attempt, Shigeno could not cope with the stress and did not even get to 65 points. And his place in the top three was immediately taken by Chaeun Lee (Korea) with his 86.75. However, Hasler got more – 90.25. But Kaishu Nakagawa took the lead with an amazing run and 94.50.

In the second run, everyone was waiting for the qualification leader to return.But Shuichiro Shigeno failed, as did all the three leaders. Meanwhile, Ian Matteoli (Italy) caught up to them – 81.00.

Third run. And Shuichiro Shigeno never returned. He demonstrated very difficult aerials in his final run, but at the very end, as they say, out of the blue, he made a mistake.

Only Hasler improved his final result to 93.75. But 0.75 points gapped him from the gold medal.

Kaishu Nakagawa (Japan) won gold, the silver medalist became Jonas Hasler (Switzerland), and Chauen Lee (Korea) got the bronze.

After the awarding ceremony, Kaishu Nakagawa first praised the course: “The courses are perfectly prepared. I enjoyed riding here. An excellent half-pipe! It’s wonderful here! Thanks to the athletes for the good competition. Thanks to the spectators for their support!”

Jonas Hasler looked absolutely happy: “Everything went so amazing for me today that it’s hard to find words! Such a beautiful venue, so many people came to see the competition. The spectators from the stands and my teammates supported me. It’s just amazing! So nice! Thanks to the team that made this pipe. Great to ride! You know, I used to ride a scooter, but older guys advised me to start snowboard, otherwise, they said, i won’t find a girlfriend. This is a great sport, I like it! And I am very happy to win a medal today!”

Igor Tarakanov, Daniil Stepanov and Petr Ershov took the 8th, 9th and 10th places, respectively.

The FIS Junior World Champs 2021 continues. On March 24, snowboarders will compete for medals in the team snowboard cross. Follow the competition schedule at ensib.ru website. Tickets can be purchased at krs.kassir.ru on the event page.