Calgary, AB. (January 20, 2024) — It was a special day for Canada at the redtag.ca FIS Ski Cross World Cup in Nakiska, Alberta, as Hannah Schmidt (Ottawa, Ontario) won the women's race and Reece Howden (Chilliwack, British Columbia) won the men's race. It's the first time Canada has topped the men's and women's podium on the same day in a World Cup ski cross race at Nakiska in nine attempts. Marielle Thompson (Whistler, BC) finished second in the women's race today to give Canada three of the six podium spots.
This is Schmitt's second win this season, third podium finish, and continues a string of top-five finishes in all three races this season. Today's result moved it to fourth place in the season standings.
“It's great to go down to the cheers of the home team's fans,” Schmidt said with a smile. “I don't think there is anything like it in the world.” “Mar and I competed in the semi-finals and the final, and it’s amazing to stand on the podium with her.”
“It's nice to see Hannah get the win today,” Thompson added. “It's very special to share 1-2 with Canada.”
This is Howden's first win of the season, his third World Cup win in Canada, and the 10th World Cup win of his career. The two-time Crystal Globe winner sits third in the season standings and has closed the gap on leader Jared Schmidt (Ottawa, ON) who finished 18th today.
“The start of the season has had some ups and downs, but I always felt the foundation was there and today was the day,” Howden said. “I continued to build confidence with all the heat of the day and by the end I was feeling pretty strong at the start.”
“It means a lot to win here and to share it with everyone. It's more than just my success, I've shared it with all the volunteers who have worked so hard this week and to be able to perform in front of family and friends is very rewarding.”
The Canadian women took four of the top eight spots today, with India Sherritt (Cranbrook, BC) taking sixth and Brittany Phelan (Mont Tremblant, QLD) taking seventh. Abby McEwen (Edmonton, Ariz.) was 11th, while Emmeline Bennett (North Vancouver, British Columbia) was 14th in her first World Cup appearance.
On the men's side, Kevin Drury (Toronto, Ontario) finished 17th, Jared Schmidt (Ottawa, Ontario) 18th and Carson Cook (Edmonton, Ariz.) 28th.
Upcoming races: (connection to FIS calendar)
The ski cross ends in Nakiska on Sunday.
Men's Alpine race SL in Kitzbühel (AUT).
Women's SL Alpine race in Jasna on January 21.
The Alps are held in Vessonaz (Switzerland) from January 22 to 25.
Men's Alpine race at two SG races in Garmisch-Partenkirchen (Germany) on January 27-29.
Follow the Canadian Ski Team this season on the Alpine Canada website, via our social media accounts and subscribe to our newsletter.
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About the Alps in Canada
Alpine Canada is the governing body for alpine, para-alpine and ski cross racing in Canada, as well as Canadian ski instructors, providing education, certification, insurance and compliance with the Coaching Code of Conduct. With the support of corporate partners and donors, along with the Government of Canada, Own the Podium, the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Canadian Coaching Association, Alpine Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic, World Championship and World Cup athletes to stimulate emergence. And inspiration and growth in the skateboarding community.