Sochi 2014: Pierre Vaultier Wins Olympic Snowboard Cross Gold
An incredible result for someone who tour a cruciate ligament in December!
After an annoying fog delay, the Men's Snowboard Boardercross flew out of the blocks this morning with the usual carnage and close racing. Under a thinner blanket of misty gloom than yesterday the riders dealt with a deteriating course and put on an epic display.
The whole show was stolen by one rider though, a rider who theoretically shouldn't have even been able to stand up, let alone race at the moment.
Frenchman Pierre Vaultier tore his cruciate ligament back in December, an injury that would usually take a good nine months to fully recover from. He had to battle through the early rounds, never really getting a clean start. By the final things were very open though with Australian world champ Alex Pullin already falling by the wayside in the quarters.
Russian Nikolay Olyunin got off to a flying start with Vaultier having to fight all the way. It was a tight two horse race with the lead switching between them over the length of the course.
But it was Vaultier, leg in a brace, and running on adrenalin to overcome the pain, who nailed the final jump more efficiently to take the gold. Olyunin came second with American Alex Deibold sneaking into the Bronze medal position on the last turn.
|1||Big final||2||6||Red||FRA||Pierre VAULTIER||PF 1|
|2||Big final||1||20||White||RUS||Nikolay OLYUNIN||PF 2|
|3||Big final||4||9||Green||USA||Alex DEIBOLD||3|
|4||Big final||6||26||Black||FRA||Paul-Henri DE LE RUE||4|
|5||Big final||5||13||Blue||NOR||Stian SIVERTZEN||5|
|6||Big final||3||15||Yellow||ITA||Luca MATTEOTTI||6|