Canada swept the gold medals in moguls Friday at the Freestyle World Championships as Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau turned back Dale Begg-Smith and American Nate Roberts to win gold.
CANADA SWEPT the gold medals in moguls Friday at the freestyle World Championships as Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau turned back Dale Begg-Smith and American Nate Roberts to win gold.
With Kristi Richards having won the women’s gold for Canada a half-hour earlier, Rousseau topped men’s qualifying and overcame contest leader Begg-Smith to win with 27.17 points. Begg-Smith, the reigning Olympic champ, tallied 26.65 to edge defending world champ Roberts by two-hundredths of a point for the silver medal.
Rousseau won with the fastest time of the competition and the highest score for turns. American David Babic, who finished fifth, tied for the best airs score in the final round. Dave DiGravio finished 11th and Jay Bowman-Kirigin 12th to round out the U.S. finishers.
“I just wanted to ski my run. I trusted my skills, my coaches … and I just wanted to do what I know I can do,” Roberts said. “This is awesome. I have great memories of this hill and to be on the podium again, in my second World Championships, is such a great feeling.”
Roberts, whose first World Cup victory came in a night competition Dec. 20, 2003, at Madonna — and whose second and third World Cup moguls wins came this season, qualified second behind Rousseau. Before the final run, he kept pressure at arm’s length by reminding himself he only needed to ski as well as he’s skied this season.
The irony, he said, is that he struggled in training during the morning session before the afternoon qualifying run. The unseasonable warm weather created soft conditions but he regrouped and at night, the snow was a little more firm.
“This is over a little bit from the course I won on [in the ’04 season] but it’s on the same venue, and, like I said, I have such great memories here.
“I trained like crap this morning and I got a little down on myself, but I’m a competitor, and I love to compete, so I put on my game face and I got after it,” Roberts said. “I just wanted to ski my run; that’s what got me this far and it was all I needed to do, and hopefully I’d get rewarded for it. You gotta know what you need to do.”
He skied next to last, then clicked on his back flip off the top jump and a back flip with an iron cross off the jump at the bottom.
World Championships freestyle moguls results
1. Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau, Canada, 27.17 points
2. Dale Begg-Smith, Australia, 26.65
3. Nathan Roberts, United States, 26.63
4. Pierre Ochs, France, 26.54
5. David Babic, United States, 26.12
6. Warren Tanner, Canada, 25.60
7. Guilbaut Colas, France, 25.37
8. Maxime Gingras, Canada, 25.26
9. Christoph Stark, Germany, 24.35
10. Sami Mustonen, Finland, 24.07