Strong start to snowboard World Cup for USA

US athletes came away from the first races with three wins in Landgraaf, the Netherlands. 17 Nov 2016
Evan Strong

The USA's Evan Strong is the No. 1-ranked men's snowboarder in the world.

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US snowboarders came away from the season-opening IPC Snowboard World Cup races with three wins on Thursday (17 November) in Landgraaf, the Netherlands.

Evan Strong, Mike Minor and Brenna Huckaby all secured victory in banked slalom on the indoor slopes of SnowWorld.

Minor, the World Cup winner from last season, finished ahead of Austrian world champion Patrick Mayrhofer in the men’s SB-UL.

Just 0.75 seconds separated the pair, who look to be repeating their close rivalry.

In 2015-16 Minor took the banked slalom World Cup globe in the last race, clearing Mayrhofer by just 200 points overall.

France’s Maxime Montaggioni capitalised on his podium finish from the IPC Snowboard Europa Cup the previous day with third.

Poland’s Monika Kotzian was the victor in the women’s SB-UL.

Strong claimed his place at the top of the podium for the USA in the men’s SB-LL2.

In another close run competition, the World Championships silver medallist posted his fastest time on his first run. Strong finished just 0.34 seconds ahead of Finland’s banked slalom World Cup champion Matti Suur-Hamari in second.

Strong’s teammate Mike Shea, the reigning world champion, was third.

However Dutch snowboarders were not to be outdone on their home slopes, enjoying two wins in Landgraaf.

World title holder Bibian Mentel-Spee led the field in the women’s SB-LL2, posting three leading runs.

Her compatriot Lisa Bunschoten, the banked slalom World Cup winner from last season at the age of 20, was not far behind in second. Australia’s Joany Badenhorst was third.

Eighteen-year-old Chris Vos got his campaign underway for the Netherlands, securing victory in the men’s SB-LL1.

The world champion in banked slalom and snowboard-cross from 2015, Vos proved he is once again the man to beat heading into the 2017 World Para Snowboard Championships in Big White, Canada, from 1-8 February.

Austria’s Reinhold Schett secured second place, whilst the USA’s Mark Mann stepped onto the podium on his World Cup debut in third.

World Championships silver medallist Huckaby rounded off the US success in the women’s SB-LL1 with a trio of leading times.

Teammate Nicole Roundy’s first run proved to be her best and was enough to secure second place behind Huckaby. Canada’s Michelle Salt was third.

Full results from the IPC Snowboard World Cup in Landgraaf are available at IPC Snowboard's website.

Friday (18 November) will see the second World Cup banked slalom races take place.

Updates, pictures and videos are being posted to @parasnowboard Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.