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Series title in grasp for Scott at final World Cup

3 March 2017

AERIALS: Danielle Scott will be fighting for her first ever Aerials World Cup series crown when she takes to the slopes in Moscow for the World Cup Final on Saturday.

Scott put herself in the driving seat to take out the title in Minsk last weekend when she finished 2nd to wrestle back the number one world ranking from Chinese rival, Mengtao Xu.

That result means the 26-year-old enters Russia knowing that beating Xu will be enough to secure her the yellow winner’s bib, a prize she has had her sights set on all season.

Should she get the win, the Sydney local will be the first Australian to win the Aerials World Cup crown since 2009.

The winner that year was Lydia Lassila, who is herself enjoying a renaissance in the sport.

Lassila beat out Scott in Belarus to claim her second gold of the World Cup season and propel her to third in the overall rankings.

It is a stunning return to form for the dual Olympic medallist, following her bronze medal at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games.

The 35-year-old, who only returned to competition in late-2016 after the birth of her second child, has now won two gold medals from four World Cup events this season.

Another good result in Moscow will see her secure a FIS World Cup podium finish for the seventh time in her career.

It has been a season to remember for all four Aussie women, and PyeongChang 2018 hopefuls, competing on the World Cup circuit.  

Laura Peel and Samantha Wells have shown great consistency and find themselves just outside the top-ten – in 11th and 12th place respectively – going into the final event of the season.

Australia’s sole male competitor David Morris has been using the current World Cup season to test out some new advanced skills.

The Sochi 2014 silver medallists set high expectations of himself at the beginning of the season, but has failed to match those with results. And whilst he still hasn’t quite nailed them, he is building them up for the Olympic year.

Morris enters the final event in 16th place on the world ranking leader board.

Competition begins in Moscow on Saturday, with qualifying commencing at 2pm, local time. Finals will be held 3am AEDT on Sunday morning.

Nathan Lange

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