Gulini Returns From Injury to Podium
PARK CITY, UT (Feb. 12) — In only her second competition back from injury, Faye Gulini (Salt Lake City, UT) was U.S. Snowboarding's top finisher at the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix at Canyons Resort, taking second to win the women's U.S. Championship. Teammate Nate Holland (Squaw Valley, CA) was the top American male finisher on a day where continuous snowfall made for low visibility and slow course speeds on Canyons Resort's Doc's Run. Austrain Markus Schairer won the men's title while Canadian Dominique Maltais took the women's.
- Faye Gulini (Salt Lake City, UT) and Nate Holland (Squaw Valley, CA) were awarded Green Jackets as U.S. Champions at the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix at Canyons.
- Utah native, Faye Gulini took second in the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, leading in each of her heats.
- It was only Gulini's second race this season after recovering from a knee injury.
- Nate Holland placed fourth overall for the men, after he took a fall near the start in the championship heat.
- Graham Watanabe (Sun Valley, ID) won the consolation round with teammate Alex Deibold (Manchester Center, VT) eighth.
- A two-time Olympian, Watanabe said it would be his last race.
- Austrian Marcus Schairer took first for the men and Dominique Maltais of Canada took the ladies win
Coming back from injury, I needed this. I needed a little confidence booster. I went to the last World Cup and it was really stressful, I felt nervous. But it is good to be back and hopefully it will carry over into the last two World Cups.
I'm pumped to have the U.S. Championship title but I really wanted to put the exclamation point on it with a win. Right off the start features, I got run into and taken out. There's not much I could have done. I'm stoked for the title, but wish I would have gotten the win. Sitting one off the podium is a bittersweet spot.
I'm fired up that mother nature is cooperating with us now and it's snowing. I've been begging for snow all winter long and for it to come on a race day - I'm still loving it. It was tough racing in these conditions. But it's snowboarding and you have to be able to snowboard while it snows.
Life is unpredictable, you never know. But my plan as of now is to just go see what else the world has to offer. I still love snowboarding. I know that that part of my life isn't done. Whether it's freeriding or whatever. This isn't really a big departure. I will remember the good times. The whole time I've been on tour, it's been a lot of laughs and I've made a lot of really good friends and I'll look back on that and hopefully maintain those relationships.
Conditions were really different today so I had to put everything together and change the way I was racing. I had a really good semifinal but I didn't have a good start in the final. I was third and passing girls in the middle and then was going to catch Alexandra [Jekova] and she crashed. It's part of the game. I'm really happy for Canada. The guys won and the girls won for the big final yesterday.
I was not expecting this. I was hoping to end up in the finals and I was hoping I could win this race and it's really amazing. The season has been up and down and up and down. Now I'm up again and I hope it stays like this. The conditions were really tough today. The snow was really soft and you had to look that you don't make any mistakes.
2/18 Sprint U.S. Grand Prix - Snowboardcross, Skicross Canyons, UT, 3 p.m. ET, NBC Sports
2/26 Sprint U.S. Grand Prix – Snowboardcross, Canyons, UT, 3 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network