Graham finished ahead of Korea’s Jae-Woo Choi and Australia’s Brodie Summers while Cox was joined on the podium by fellow Australian Institute of Sport / NSW Institute of Sport skier Nicole Parks and NSWIS athlete Taylah O’Neill.
Graham, the winner of the last three ABOMs and Cox, who won the last two years, went into today’s dual mogul competition, the 24th year of the event, as red-hot favourites and more than lived up to expectation.
By winning her third ABOM, Cox joins another Australian, Maria Despas, as the only women to have won the nation’s longest running mogul ski event on three occasions.
With win number four, only one other male athlete has won the event more times than Graham – Australian Nick Cleaver, who amassed five victories between 1991 and 1995.
The event has become an annual tradition for the 18-year-old AIS / NSWIS athletes who both first entered the ABOM event as 10-year-olds.
Their emerging careers have both followed similar paths since – both were awarded AIS/NSWIS scholarships for the first time in 2010, they made their World Cup debuts in the same year and this season has seen them balancing HSC school studies with continuing their quest to represent Australia at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games.
The win shows that Graham and Cox are maturing as mentally tough athletes, given that they were competing against impressive fields and went into today’s event with significantly less on-snow training this winter.
Both have cut back the amount of on snow training during the Australian winter to spend more time on school studies.
Graham admitted that he has spent about 50 percent less time on snow this winter, compared with previous years, so winning his fourth ABOM has provided additional satisfaction.
“I felt a little bit of pressure today but I made sure that my approach was the same as usual,” Graham said.
“It involves making sure I remain mentally calm, putting down a solid run and don’t overdo it.
”Winning today was very satisfying as the ABOM is a special event for everybody who competes in it.”
Cox, a World Cup medalist in the USA last February, said that the win was the perfect way to bounce back from a fourth and sixth place at last month’s National Championships in Perisher.
“I’m so excited and really pleased to win today,” Cox said.
She added that the win shows the specific training direction Cox has taken this winter is paying dividends, particularly with newly found speed, resulting from a great deal of strength work in the gym and a more aggressive approach to competition.