The USA’s Michael Minor stormed to the first snowboard-cross World Cup victory of his short career on Wednesday (9 March), in Les Angles, France.
Minor made his World Cup debut in November, winning banked slalom in Landgraaf, the Netherlands before claiming another first-place finish in Big White, Canada, in February.
However his triumph in France in the men’s SB-UL represents the first time he has topped the podium in snowboard-cross.
France were also delighted with second place for Maxime Montaggioni, who claimed his maiden top-three finish.
“I was very close,” Montaggioni said, going on to speak of his win over Austria’s Patrick Mayrhofer in the qualification round. “I am particularly satisfied with my semi-final against the one we consider as the current number one. This second place motivates me a lot for the rest of the competition. I will not give up!”
The race for third was between Italian world champion Manuel Pozzerle and Mayrhofer, with the Austrian emerging on top.
The Netherlands’ Renske van Beek won the women’s SB-UL.
The season-long head-to-head between Dutch world champion Chris Vos and Austria’s Reinhold Schett continued in the men’s SB-LL1.
Schett finished ahead of Vos in Big White, but it was Vos who took the win in Les Angles.
Spain’s Oscar Gonzalez Gonzalez was third, having crossed the line ahead of Norway’s Kristian Moen in the small final.
Nicole Roundy took another win for the USA in the women’s SB-LL1, toppling France’s Paralympic silver medallist Cecile Hernandez-Cervellon in their race.
Canada’s Michelle Salt was third.
The USA’s Paralympic champion Evan Strong enjoyed his first snowboard-cross victory of the season in the men’s SB-LL2.
Teammate Michael Shea had been one of the riders to finish ahead of Strong in past races but he took second on Wednesday.
Finland’s world champion Matti-Suur Hamari claimed third after winning his small final against Spain’s Oier Zabala Egana.
The Netherlands’ Worlds gold medallist Bibian Mentel-Spee was true to form in the women’s SB-LL2, taking her fifth consecutive victory.
Compatriot Lisa Bunschoten was second, followed onto the podium by Australia’s Joany Badenhorst who won her small final against the USA’s Heidi Jo Duce.
There were also wins for van Beek, Hernandez-Cervellon, and the USA’s Amy Purdy in IPC Europa Cup women’s snowboard-cross races on Tuesday (8 March).
On the men’s side, Minor, Schett and Shea claimed victories.
The winners of the overall Europa Cups for each classification will be decided on Friday (11 March) with banked slalom.
World Cup races, also in banked slalom, will conclude the action in Les Angles on Saturday (12 March).
Full results are available at IPC Snowboard’s website.