Australian Para-snowboarder Joany Badenhorst will arrive in PyeongChang 2018 as the athlete with the biggest target on her back, after the NSW Institute of Sport athlete claimed her second gold medal today at the IPC World Cups Finals in Canada.
The season-ending victory was extra sweet, as it also sealed two IPC Crystal Globes for the most points won in the banked slalom and overall competition throughout the World Cup season.
Showing off her fine form in the final banked slalom event today (SB-LL2), the Griffith local placed first in both her runs, finishing in an impressive time of 1:25.80 – outclassing silver medallist Renske van Beek (1:39.42) by more than 13 seconds.
“We finished the final race before the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Games and I’m very happy to say I took out the gold in the banked slalom, the IPC Crystal gloves in the banked slalom and the overall women’s title,” Badenhorst said.
“I couldn’t be happier and proud of myself and my team here.
“The racing was really intense today, the conditions were difficult but the IPC gave us an incredible course to work with and I’m really happy and excited to see my hard work come together.”
Finishing the World Cup season on a high, and placing first on the overall rankings has been the labour of four years of hard work and determination after a training crash in Sochi saw her miss out on her Paralympic debut.
And while the 23-year-old from Griffith is pleased with her results, she knows the work is not over yet as she counts down the final month until the pinnacle event begins.
“There is still a lot of work that needs to be done before the Paralympic Games begin in PyeongChang but I’m really happy to see how it goes and put in that hard work leading into the Games.”
Fellow Australian Para-snowboarders Ben Tudhope (NSWIS) and Sean Pollard also competed in the banked slalom events today, with outstanding results.
Tudhope narrowly missed out on a podium finish, placing fourth in a time of 1:16.44 – less than one second behind Great Britain’s Owen Pick who won bronze (1:16.31).
Bunbury’s Sean Pollard finish in 7th place in the men’s banked slalom for athletes with upper limb impairments in 1:19.49, just 3.15 seconds behind first place, highlighting the quality of the stacked field.
Australia’s Para-snowboarders will now take a short break before they begin their staging camp for the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Games in Japan.
By APC Media