There was heavy fog in the air as Mikaël Kingsburypursued his objective of earning the 19th Crystal Globe of his career. And yet, the unfavourable weather conditions did nothing to deter him as he reached his goal by claiming the top spot on the podium in Megève, France.
As the last skier in the men’s big final, Kingsbury needed to beat the 86.23-point score obtained by his archrival, Ikuma Horishima. The Québécois succeeded, scoring 0.04 points higher than Horishima and clinching his 73rd World Cup gold medal.
“I’m really happy with this win! We’re in a fight to the finish for the Crystal Globe. It’s been a fierce battle since the beginning of the season. I felt the pressure on my last run and I wanted to leave everything on the course today (Friday). I’m really happy. Tomorrow will be a big day, and there’s still a lot of work to do,” said Kingsbury in an interview following his win.
Walter Wallberg of Sweden took third place with 85.13 points.
In addition to Kingsbury, three other Canadians advanced to the first final, which was delayed by more than an hour due to tenacious fog on the course. Alexandre Lavoie(77.31 points), Gabriel Dufresne (72.89 points) and Brenden Kelly (72.86 points) finished the first final in 14th, 15th and 16th place, respectively.
Fifth place for Justine Dufour-Lapointe
On the women’s side, Justine Dufour-Lapointe earned her best World Cup result since December 2020 with a fifth-place finish today. Earlier in the day, the 27-year-old skier had secured her spot in the Top Six by finishing third in the first final.
France’s Perrine Laffont helped spectators forget about the long delay when she won the big final with 86.86 points. She was joined on the podium by Australia’s Jakara Anthony (86.43 points) and Japan’s Anri Kawamura (82.54 points).
Also in the first final, Chloé Dufour-Lapointe (77.19 points) earned the second-highest Canadian result of the day with 12th place. She was closely followed by Maia Schwinghammer (75.57 points) and Sofiane Gagnon (75.33 points), who finished 13th and 14th.
Berkley Brown did not advance past the qualifications.
The World Cup season will wrap up on Saturday with the dual moguls final in Megève.