Nelson Golden, Jemison Grabs Silver At Junior Worlds Super-G
For the fourth day of competition, the 2022 FIS Alpine Junior World Ski Championships started the morning off with the women’s super-G, followed by the men’s super-G. Isaiah Nelson and Ava Sunshine Jemison led the way for the Americans, earning their inaugural Junior Worlds medals, with gold and silver, respectively.
Nelson Crowned Junior World Super-G Champ
Nelson kicked out of the gate bib three and raced into first with a time of 1:06.57. Fortunately for Nelson, that would hold for 82 more racers, as he walked away crowned 2022 Junior World Super-G Champion. Born and raised in Wayzata, MN, and skied for Buck Hill Ski Racing Club, Nelson has had success in the 2022 FIS Alpine Junior World Ski Championships so far, grabbing seventh in the downhill on Friday.
Swiss Franjo Von Allmen was second, just 0.13 seconds off the pace. Von Allmen also placed second in Friday’s downhill. Rounding out the podium was Italian Giovanni Franzoni, who won Friday’s downhill. Franzoni was 0.41 seconds out.
"What an amazing day: to win medals in both the women’s and men’s super-G on the same day was truly spectacular!" commented Alpine Development Director Chip Knight.
"Isaiah had a strong game plan from the get-go," he continued, "picking an early start number and having a good inspection plan for the open course set. There are some very strong juniors here so he knew he had to attack the whole way to be competitive. He executed his game plan, pushing the line and absorbing the terrain, and was rewarded with a gold medal."
Nelson is still in disbelief after his result, saying "Today was amazing, insane really. I still don’t quite believe it. Even though I came down into first I was actually upset because I knew I left some time on the top section of the course. But after that mistake, I knew I had to make up for it so I was really pushing hard and on the limit the rest of the way! And it was enough to hold first place! I was super nervous in the finish because the next three guys to come down were the best-ranked guys, and seeing each one come down behind me was a feeling I cannot describe."
Teammate Cooper Puckett, skiing out of Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, snagged himself a top 10 as well, landing in an impressive ninth. Also starting for the Americans were Tanner Perkins was 22nd, Jay Poulter 36th, Camden Palmquist 46th, and Ryder Sarchett 65th.
Jemison Leads Women with Silver
Jemison, a native of Edwards, Colo. kicked out of the start gate and skied into second place with a time of 1:08.79, .45 seconds off of winner, Austrian Magdalena Egger. Egger is no stranger to the podium, as she is now a five-time World Junior Champion, and started this series off with the gold medal in the downhill on Thursday. Rounding out the podium was another Austrian, Victoria Olivier with a time of 1:09.5, .71 seconds off of teammate Egger.
Despite Jemison’s downhill race, she reflects on her finish today and how she was eager to come back faster. “The conditions were phenomenal. I was a little nervous because I didn’t have the best downhill race but it made me determined to make today a good one,” said Jemison. Jemison sees a bright future for her team and teammates.
“Lots of good momentum as a team. Fun on and off the hill and good energy across the board,” she added.
Coming out of the gate in bib 13 was Park City, Utah native Lauren Macuga, a 20-year-old member of the U.S. Ski Team, finishing 12th with a time of 1:04.88. Macuga was a bronze medalist in Thursday’s downhill, the opening race in the nine-day competition in Panorama, B.C.
Dasha Romanov, 18, from Thornton, Colo. also started for the Americans, finishing 35th. Romanov speaks fluent Russian and English. Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation is her home ski club.
Knight said of Jemison's performance, "Ava has been skiing well all year, so we all knew she was capable of a result like this, but it’s always a little different at a championship event. It was really impressive to see the way she overcame some nerves and uncharacteristic mistakes from the downhill, and rebounded with aggressive skiing today along with tactical adjustments in key spots. This is a huge achievement for her!"
Nelson reflected on what this result means for the team as a whole, saying, "To get this result and add to the impressive results the girls already got was so much fun. Our team is so excited right now. We’ve got gold, silver, and bronze! We are all super fired up for the combined and I must say that we are definitely a little lucky that this super-G counts for both the super-G and alpine combined because I think a lot of us are in a really good position for the slalom!"
Up next for the men and women is the alpine combined on Sunday. Saturday’s super-G run will count towards the super-G portion of the alpine combined, so both Jemison and Nelson are in a good position to hunt for the podium.
PANORAMA 2022 COMPETITION SCHEDULE
March 6 – Men’s and Women’s Alpine Combined
March 7 – Mixed Team Event
March 8 – Men’s Giant Slalom and Women’s Slalom
March 9 – Women’s Giant Slalom and Men’s Slalom
Panorama 2022 Official Website