On his second and final run at the Mammoth Mountain Freeski World Cup on Sunday in California, Evan McEachran of Oakville, ON, outdid himself to capture the bronze medal.
As the second-to-last competitor to start, he threw down an excellent run that earned him 93.00 points and the second-place spot behind American Nicholas Goepper (94.75), who finished first in both runs. However, the final skier, Alexander Hall of the USA, shook up the standings in this hard-fought final, scoring 95.50 points on his last run and bumping McEachran into third place.
This was the fourth career podium finish for McEachran of Ontario, who won a bronze medal at the same venue in 2018.
“I made some errors on the rails on my first run, even though I had never had that problem during training, so I focused my energy on my second run. I was shocked (by my score) and really happy! Just being on the podium means a lot to me,” said the bronze medal winner.
The 24-year-old will opt out of the next World Cup event in order to stay home to train and keep progressing his bag of tricks, then take part in the X Games in Aspen, Colorado, in two weeks.
“It’s crazy that the X Games and the Olympics are back-to-back! I grew up watching the X Games and they’ve always been a dream of mine. Having our sport included in the Olympics is another amazing opportunity for us!” added McEachran, who hopes to be part of the Canadian contingent in Beijing next month.
All the Canadians at today’s event qualified for the 16-competitor final.
Édouard Therriault (Lorraine, QC) finished 7th with 87.75 points, Mark Hendrickson(Calgary, AB) 8th with 83.75, Teal Harle (Campbell River, BC) 14th with 66.50 and Max Moffatt (Caledon, ON) 16th with 10.50.
In the women’s final, Olivia Asselin (Lac-Beauport, QC) finished at the foot of the podium. Asselin, who was first in Thursday’s qualifier, performed well in her first run of the final, scoring 89.00 points, which put her in third place.
However, she was edged out by a competitor in the second round, and the 17-year-old Canadian was unable to regain a spot on the podium when she scored 26.75 on her second run.
The next event on the circuit will be hosted by the French resort of Font Romeu, France, where the women’s and men’s qualifications will begin on Friday.