Spectacular Sunny Valley tougher than it looks
26 February 2017
SKI CROSS: Australian ski cross athletes Sami Kenned-Sim and Anton Grimus were amoung an elite field of athletes who christened Russia’s Sunny Valley Resort ski cross mountain, the newest venue on the ski cross World Cup circuit.
With a packed grandstand waiting at the bottom of the hill to greet competitors, Kennedy-Sim praised the mountain after she qualified second and then won her quarter-final.
“The event was awesome with 10,000 spectators providing an atmosphere that I have only experienced at the Olympic Games,” Kennedy-Sim said.
“The course is suited to everyone, so the racing was very tight but conditions deteriorated every minute with snowfalls resulting in significant snow accumulation on the track, making it the toughest race I think I have ever done.”
Kennedy-Sim blitzed the field in her quarter-final leading from start to finish but was unable to advance to the big final and had to settle for the small final and seventh overall.
“I skiied a great quarter final and then had some issues in the semi and small finals however I stuck to the race plan that we as a team came up with and I am proud of how I skiied, how I stayed focused and how I managed the changing conditions.
“I’m sad that I didn't get to race in the big final but things are moving in the right direction,” she said.
Grimus returned to competition following minor surgery in January and whilst he failed to qualify, he is back on the road and looking towards the next World Cup in Canada.
From Russia the FIS Ski Cross World Cup moves to Blue Mountain, Canada for the World Cup finals, with the single competition set to take place on March 5.