The Australian team featured NSWIS riders, 2018 Olympic silver medallist Jarryd Hughes and multiple World Cup winner Belle Brockhoff, who delivered Australia’s first ever mixed teams medal in the new Olympic event which will debut in Beijing 2022.
The mixed teams event is a two-competitor-per-team relay with one male and female athlete. The male athletes race first, with the women leaving the start gate with the respective time margin that the men crossed the finish line.
In the medal round, Hughes got Australia off to a great start in the final with impressive riding to cross the line in first place, 0.77 seconds ahead of the Italian team.
Brockhoff then raced exceptionally well to take the victory finishing 0.64 seconds ahead of the Italian team with France crossing the line in third place.
“Well, this is as good as it gets! We haven’t raced in a team event before ever. We knew we could do it and we were really confident in our abilities, then we just set out a really good game plan among the two of us and maximized our strengths and I am just lucky to have had such a strong rider like Belle to be riding with,” said Hughes after stepping off the podium.
“I am really stoked to be here, especially after yesterday’s fall, it’s a bit of a redemption, so I am very happy and very excited,” teammate Brockhoff said.
The mixed teams gold is the first Australian snowboard cross World Championship gold medal since the late Alex “Chumpy” Pulllin won his second consecutive World title in 2013.
The NSWIS snowboard cross athletes will now head to the Austrian resort of Reiteralm for a World Cup event on February 18.