Pyha 2019: Maxime Montaggioni returns in style


When day one of the 2019 World Para-Snowboard Championships wrapped up Wednesday in Piha, Finland, it turned into as though Maxime Montaggioni turned into in no way long gone. The Frenchman again to the pinnacle of the guys’ SB-UL banked slalom podium, preserving his identity from years in the past. But this time changed into exceptional, with unhappiness from PyeongChang 2018 nonetheless sparkling in his mind. “I’m delighted to be returned,” Montaggioni said. “Unfortunately, I might prefer to win the Paralympics. However it’s right for my confidence to win right here nowadays, and I will attempt to get the gold for snowboard-go due to the fact I’m very prompted.”

Montaggioni, who was injured in the course of training in PyeongChang, sped down his first run in 50.05.
The goal for his second run changed into to beat China’s Sun Qi’s time because the quickest throughout all lessons. But with the wind picking up and snow accumulating, the course has become more challenging.
“After my first run I had a very good feeling, and my teach said OK now you need to beat the first time of all the categories,” he stated. “I didn’t succeed but I [did well] so it became a terrific feeling because it changed into snowing, so it became slower.” Austria’s Patrick Mayrhofer, the PyeongChang 2018 silver medallist, could not catch Montaggioni and took silver. Italy’s Jacopo Luchini got here in 1/3.

returns in style

Sun Qi shines

Sun Qi exchanged a hug and laughs with the very man he took the gold medal from. The 19-yr-vintage continued his fantastic season, going from finishing outside the pinnacle-10 at the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games to turning into the guys’ banked slalom SB-LL2 international champion. He won in style, clocking forty-nine — ninety-five seconds to be the most effective rider to go sub-50. Waiting on the end line to congratulate Sun become former world champion Matti Suur-Hamari. With his right arm in a sling following a surgical operation earlier this month, the local Finn celebrity defined to Sun about his damage via a translator.

Sun rubbed Suur-Hamari’s right shoulder cautiously.

“[Sun] is not wonder anymore because I saw what he’s capable of, like what kind of rider he’s,” stated Suur-Hamari, who raced against Sun at World Cups earlier this season. “So I’m stoked for him. He’s been working difficult and training hard. So he deserved that win. Sun Qi is the sort of rider that the game wishes. The game desires to develop. So the racing receives nearer and no person is aware of who is winning till the race is done.” As Owen Pick rounded the last bank and tucked low to increase his pace, the British rider appeared near beating Sun’s time. But he turned into zero.Eighteen seconds brief to take silver. Japan’s Shinji Tabuchi completed the rostrum.

Gold at closing

After a couple of silver medals from the 2017 Worlds, followed through silver and bronze from PyeongChang 2018, Lisa Bunschoten were looking ahead to her golden wreck. It, in the end, got here while she won the girls’ SB-LL2 – her first fundamental gold medal. The prize became hers to lose because the 23-12 months-vintage Dutchwoman had dominated her class the entire season. “I woke up with an extraordinary feeling, and I felt like I become ready for it,” Bunschoten said. “I turned into a little bit frightened. It turned into extra pleasure because it’s one of these first-rate course and I always revel in this place, so I became excited we had a World Champs here and excited that it sooner or later came. It’s past due in the season.

“So I was a touch anxious however I constantly experience like I want the nerves to get targeted and be in the proper intellectual region.” The closest to Bundchen’s time of 55.Seventy-three changed into Canada’s Sandrine Hamel, who turned into about four seconds off, observed by way of Spain’s Astrid Fina Paredes.

US showdown

The men’s SB-LL1 become an exciting war that had the united states’ Mike Schultz thieve the gold medal from compatriot Noah Elliott with a stunning very last run. Elliot sat in the first area, placing pressure on the rest of the sector to beat 51.21. Schultz amazed himself while 50.Sixty-three showed up, giving a small celebration as he waited anxiously for the reigning Paralympic champion to come down the route. Elliott couldn’t healthy Schultz’s pace, giving Schultz his first international name. “I turned into centered on this occasion, the World Champs, because I came up short almost a year in the past,” said Schultz, silver medallist in PyeongChang. “My first run was so-so. I became worried a bit approximately the conditions with snow increasing and I wasn’t positive if I’d get a fast time. But I simply hit my marks and capable of lay down a fast run.“I’m so pumped. The first mission of this journey is executed.” The Netherlands’ reigning international champion Chris Vos claimed bronze.

Best of the rest

France’s Cecile Hernandez changed into the undisputed winner of the ladies’ SB-LL1 class. It broke into a bittersweet feeling as her hardest competitor Brenna Huckaby of the USA turned into no longer competing because of harm.
“It’s a bit bizarre sensation due to the fact Brenna is not here,” Hernandez stated. “But I’m happy due to the fact I improved my time within the 2nd run.”
China swept the ladies’ SB-UL category with Pang Qiaorong taking gold and Lu Jiangli the silver.