Reece Howden of Cultus Lake, British Columbia won the gold medal in a men’s World Cup ski cross event in Nakiska, Alberta on Saturday. For Howden, it was his first World Cup medal of his career, and remarkably the colour of the medal was gold.
Howden was one of three Canadians to win a ski cross medal in Nakiska on Saturday. Kevin Drury of Toronto, Ontario won the silver medal in the men’s ski cross World Cup, making it a 1-2 Canadian finish. Meanwhile in the women’s World Cup ski cross event, Canadian Olympic silver medalist Brittany Phelan of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, Quebec won the silver medal. Phelan won her Olympic silver medal at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang.
In the men’s World Cup ski cross event on Saturday, Daniel Bohnacker of Germany won the bronze medal. In the big final, there were two Canadian skiers and two German skiers as Florian Wilmsmann also qualified and finished in fourth place. In the women’s World Cup ski cross event on Saturday, Sandra Naeslund of Sweden won the gold medal and Fanny Smith of Switzerland won the bronze medal.
Drury has now won eight World Cup medals and four medals this season. In December, he won three gold medals. They took place in Val Thorens, France, Arosa, Switzerland and Innichen, Italy. This was Phelan’s seventh World Cup medal of her career and second this season as she placed third in Innichen on December 21.
In the men’s World Cup ski cross standings, Drury is in first place with 476 points and Howden is in ninth with 185 points. In the women’s World Cup ski cross standings, Phelan is in fourth with 310 points. Naeslund leads with 550 points. The medals for Drury, Phelan and Howden in Nakiska will give them confidence as they prepare for the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing.