Team Alberta member Mackenzie Schwinghamer earned a gold medal in mogul skiing on Monday, adding it to her silver for aerial freestyle.
The 2019 Canada Winter Games “have been good to me — and I’ve been good in them,” said a smiling Schwinghamer.
The Kelowna native chose to compete for Team Alberta four years ago because she prefers the coaching. The decision is paying off, since Schwinghamer skied a perfect run at the Canyon Ski Resort, leading the way with 80.79 points to win women’s moguls.
The silver medal went to Sandrine Vaillancourt (78.18) and the bronze to Florence Delsame (76.73), both of the Quebec Team.
Schwinghamer claimed second place in aerials on Sunday, and calls the two medals she won at the Games a confidence booster.“I realized today how much my hard work is paying off.”
The 19-year-old, who got a big hug from her dad after the race, believes she did a lot of things right to bring down her time: “I have a very direct ski line and this bumped up my turn scores.” The two mid-air flips she did also involved grabbing her skis, which increased her air score.
Perhaps most importantly, Schwinghamer said she kept her cool: “I felt like, I’ve got this.”
Team Alberta member Danny Tanner just missed the podium in men’s moguls, placing fourth with a score of 81.80 points. “I’m pretty bummed, but it happens… it’s part of the Games,” he said.
The 20-year-old Calgarian skied slower than usual and he doesn’t blame the Canyon course. While slightly shorter than world competitions courses, Tanner said it had nice powder. He’s hoping to do better later this week at the North American Cup in Colorado.
The winner of men’s moguls is Brayden Kuroda of Penticton, B.C., who also won a gold medal Sunday in aerial freestyle with 86.81 points. The silver medalist is Olivier Lessard (83.76) and the bronze medalist is Jean-Christophe Nadeau (83.13). Both are from Quebec.
Kuroda said, “Everything came together for me” — unlike during his first morning qualifying event, in which he “struggled in the bottom air.”
Leaving the Games with two gold medals, said Kuroda, is an unexpected bonus. “I honestly didn’t know how well I would do. I was crossing my fingers.”