FREESTYLE Preview: World Cup in full swing again after Worlds conclude in Utah

Swiss Freestyle Ski Cross star Fanny Smith

The World Freestyle and Snowboard Championships finished on Sunday in Utah and already the competitors are disbursed around the world, with World Cup competition resuming right away in Moscow (RUS), Calgary (CAN) and Feldberg (GER).

Aerials in Moscow:

There are only four Aerials competitions on the World Cup calendar for 2018-19 and only one has been held so far, at Lake Placid (USA). The men’s medalists were Maxim Burov (RUS), Xindi Wang (CHN) and Stanislav Nikitin (RUS), while the women’s top-3 included Mengtao Xu (CHN) winning, followed by Shao Qi (CHN) and Xu Nuo (CHN).

Aliaksandra Ramanouskaya (BLR) pulled off a surprise win in Utah, followed by Lyubov Nikitina (RUS) and Xu; can she do it again? Burov won gold in Utah and is a clear favorite while jumping at home. The minor medals in Utah went to Oleksandr Abramenko (UKR) and Noe Roth (SUI).

The competition was moved from Sunday to Saturday. Look for results here.

Halfpipe in Calgary:

It’s only a 2 1/2-hour flight from Salt Lake City to Calgary, so many of the World Championships competitors will likely stop for this week’s events on Thursday (qualifying) and Saturday (finals).

Only two of the five events on the World Cup calendar have been contested so far, with Aaron Blunck (USA) and Simon d’Artois winning; they went 1-4 in Utah, with Blunck defending his 2017 title. France’s Kevin Rolland and Noah Bowman of Canada won the silver and bronze medals in Utah last week.

Look for results here.

Ski Cross in Feldberg:

The Ski Cross World Cup season has passed halfway, with six of 11 races completed, but the races for the Crystal Globes are still tight for both men and women:

Men (6 of 11 races):
1. 415 Bastien Midol (FRA)
2. 254 Jean Frederic Chapuis (FRA)
3. 243 Alex Fiva (SUI)
4. 237 Brady Leman (CAN) ~ 2019 Worlds silver medalist
5. 224 Jonathan Midol (FRA)

Women (6 of 11 races):
1. 505 Fanny Smith (SUI) ~ 2019 Worlds silver medalist
2. 400 Marielle Thompson (CAN) ~ 2019 World Champion
3. 350 Sandra Naeslund (SWE)
4. 251 Alizee Baron (FRA) ~ 2019 Worlds bronze medalist
5. 243 Brittany Phelan (CAN)

France’s Francois Place won the World Championships gold in Utah and Canada’s Kevin Drury was third; neither has won a World Cup medal this season.

Among the women, Smith has won four times and medaled in five of six events held thus far. Naeslund was eliminated in the quarterfinals in Utah, but still has a good shot at repeating as seasonal champ.

Qualifying will be held on Friday and racing on both Saturday and Sunday. Look for results here.