Dominique Maltais hurts knee, misses final at X Games
Americans Lindsay Jacobellis, Nate Holland, win gold
American Lindsay Jacobellis powered down the snowboard cross course to win her eighth X Games gold medal on Friday in Aspen, Colo., setting a record for most gold medals won by a female in X Games history.
Canadians Maelle Ricker and Dominique Maltais, both of whom are expected to contend for the podium in Sochi, had disappointing days. Ricker and Maltais were eliminated in the semifinals.
Jacobellis has been on the comeback trail undergoing several knee surgeries since 2012 to repair her left anterior cruciate ligament.
"With the last two years, what I've been through, it's like the icing on the cake," said Jacobellis.
"The win gives me the best confidence I could have going into Sochi."
Jacobellis will compete in her third career Olympic Games next month in Sochi.
Eva Samkova of Czech Republic, and Helene Olafsen of Norway, rounded out the women’s podium winning silver and bronze.
Carle Brenneman was Canada’s top finisher in the women’s event finishing fifth in the final. Ricker won the small final for seventh overall, while Maltais sat out of the final race to rest a sore knee.
After the race Maltais tweeted: "Had my bad day of the season today finishing 12th at X Games. Hurt my knee a bit and decided not to race the small final!"
"My knee is good, no worries guys," she added in another tweet
Had my bad day of the season today finishing 12th @XGames...hurt my knee a bite and decided to not race the small final!
— Dominique Maltais (@DodoMaltais) January 24, 2014
In the men’s event, the Americans took top honours as Nate Holland won his seventh X Games gold edging fellow American rider Alex Tuttle and Konstantin Schad of Germany.
"Another X Games gold? I can't believe it," said Holland.
“This year's gone up and down for me so much: broken collarbone, Olympic qualifiers, scratched my way to the Olympics. It's just been a year of adversity, and I'm just so stoked to overcome that. I'm on the right path now, and it gives me so much confidence for Sochi."
Kevin Hill of Vernon, B.C., was Canada’s fastest rider event finishing fourth.
“I was really happy with my day overall except for the final,” said Hill. “Consistency is something I really want to work on leading into the Olympics.”
Chris Robanske and Rob Fagan advanced to the small final finishing seventh and tenth respectively.
With files from ESPN and Canada Snowboard.