Vail’s DelBosco wins Jeep skicross race
Vail, CO Colorado
SUN VALLEY, Idaho ” For the past few years, Vail’s Chris DelBosco knew he could win. DelBosco’s coach knew he could win. Even DelBosco’s fellow competitors knew he could win.
Saturday, DelBosco won.
At the final Jeep King of the Mountain skicross race held in Sun Valley, Idaho, DelBosco, who competes with the Canadian Olympic Team, topped a world-class field for his first career victory.
“I’ve been knocking on the door all year,” DelBosco said. “To do it at this event, with the finals like that, it was unbelievable. My dad was there, too. It was really cool to finally get a win.”
In the finals, DelBosco jumped out ahead of Tomas Kraus, the No. 1 skicross athlete in the world and this year’s World Cup Champion.
“He kind of missed one of the compression on the first jump, and I just pulled out,” DelBosco said. “I’m not so used to leading in the finals. I thought, ‘Is this for real?'”
DelBosco didn’t look back, leaving Kraus, Daron Rahlves and fellow Canadian teammate Stanley Hayer in the dust.
“He had this coming all year. I’m real proud of him,” said Archer, who coaches the Canadian Olympic Team. “I took him this morning and gave him a pep talk and told him to go for it and not leave anything behind. He was awesome today. His starts were fast and he beat the fastest starter in the world (Kraus) out of the gate.”
In his first heat of the day, DelBosco jumped ahead in no time and smoked the competition.
“That was kind of what I was trying to do all day, and it worked out,” said DelBosco, who had the second fastest qualifying time on Thursday. “It was just one of those days where everything clicked. I didn’t really put much pressure on myself.”
DelBosco didn’t trail at any point of any of his four heats Saturday.
In almost every event this season ” the Winter X Games, other Jeep competitions and the World Cups ” DelBosco has been in the thick of things. At a World Cup race last weekend in Switzerland, DelBosco took fourth, moving him into fifth place in the standings.
“He was really strong in last few World Cups and was really frustrated, which is something I’m glad to see,” Archer said. “He wasn’t satisfied to make the finals and end up in fourth. He wants more, and today he got a taste of that. He’s going to be a force next year.”
Saturday was a great day for the Canadian team, as the women went 1-2, with Julia Murray and Anik Demers-Wild.
“That was the first podium from women’s side this year in a pretty big event ” it’s great for the team,” Archer said. “It lets everyone know we’re not just the men’s side and we have pretty strong women coming up.”
On the men’s side, Hayer was third with teammate Davey Barr fifth. The Canadian men have had a dominant year, with many top-three finishes.
“We’ve made our presence known,” DelBosco said. “We kind of feed off each other. I’m always watching Stan or Davey get on the podium, and it’s like, ‘Man, one of these days …'”
DelBosco’s day cam at just the right time ” the final official race of the season.
“It just motivates me to work harder,” he said. “I worked pretty hard last summer to get ready for this season. I’m not quite where I need to be yet in terms of upper body strength for getting out of the gate.”
“We’ve got a plan for Chris to be there in two year,” Archer said, referring to the 2010 Vancouver Games.
The Canadian team will have a camp in Red Mountain, British Columbia, followed by a national championship race.
Sports Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 748-2935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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