Fresh from some sparkling performances at the Pyha 2019 World Championships, riders from around the globe can top off their season with a few more prizes at the 2019 World Para Snowboard World Cup Finals, beginning on Thursday in Klovsjo, Sweden.
The 2018-19 season concludes this week, with the overall, banked slalom and snowboard-cross title winners to be decided.
Another victory for Vos?
Banked slalom races kick things off, with Netherlands’ Chris Vos and Australia’s Ben Tudhope on target to secure their category’s respective titles in the discipline.
Vos has won all but one of his World Cup banked slalom races, and he has a strong lead in the men’s SB-LL1 ranking ahead of Croatia’s Bruno Bosnjak. But USA’s world silver medallist Noah Elliott is also in Klovsjo and is the very man who finished ahead of Vos on the podium at last week’s World Championships.
Tudhope just missed out on a banked slalom medal in Pyha. But the 19-year-old SB-LL2 rider has shown tremendous growth this season, as his outstanding World Cup performances have placed him firmly at the top of the discipline’s ranking.
Tight at the top
The men’s banked slalom SB-UL rankings are tight. Austria’s world silver medallist Patrick Mayrhofer holds a 500-point lead over Australia’s Simon Patmore. The latter is looking to make up for just missing the podium in Pyha.
Snowboard-cross finals will be held on Saturday and Sunday, and Klovsjo will be important in determining the discipline’s title winners as the rankings are tight in all categories.
Vos is chasing Austria’s Reinhold Schett by 550 points in the men’s SB-LL1. The 21-year-old is coming off a silver medal from Pyha 2019, but the Austrian veteran would also like to redeem his fourth place at the World Championships.
A win for Canada’s Alex Massie could secure him the men’s SB-LL2 title. But Worlds silver medallist Tudhope has other intentions, as he trails Massie by 800 points.
The absence of France’s reigning world champion Maxime Montaggioni could give Italy’s SB-UL leader Jacopo Luchini the prize. But Paralympic champion Patmore is not far away and has momentum after claiming Worlds silver.
Patmore, Vos and Tudhope are also the overall leaders in their respective categories and strong performances in Klovsjo could see them walk away with the season’s crystal globe.
Bunschoten’s brilliant end
The Netherlands’ double world champion Lisa Bunschoten can close her season with a statement.
The 23-year-old has pretty much been unstoppable this entire season and is on course to sweep all the SB-LL2 prizes on offer in Klovsjo.
Battling Bunschoten for the podium are compatriot Renske van Beek and Sweden’s Sonia Elvstaal.
Live results from the World Cup Finals in Klovsjo will be available on World Para Snowboard’s website.