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Olympics-Snowboarding-US veterans win gold in snowboard cross mixed team event

Randy Mancini 2 Feb 11
Snowboard - Mixed Team Snowboard Cross Big Final
2022 Beijing Olympics - Snowboard - Mixed Team Snowboard Cross Big Final - Genting Snow Park, Zhangjiakou, China - February 12, 2022. Lorenzo Sommariva of Italy (L), Eliot Grondin of Canada (2nd L), Nick Baumgartner of the United States (C) and Omar Visintin of Italy in action. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

February 12, 2022

By Mari Saito and Winni Zhou

ZHANGJIAKOU, China (Reuters) -The United States won gold in the inaugural snowboard cross mixed team event at the Beijing Games on Saturday, with Lindsey Jacobellis beating Italian Michela Moioli in a nail-biting final race.

Canada, whose female rider had crashed in the final race, caught up to win bronze.

The American team, made up of Jacobellis and 40-year old Nick Baumgartner, beat Italy by 0.2 seconds in the final race.

Jacobellis, 36, won the first gold medal for the United States at the Beijing Olympics. The pair were the oldest team to compete at Saturday’s mixed team event.

Jacobellis also won the women’s snowboard cross final on Wednesday, the gold medal giving her redemption from a career-defining fall at the Turin Games 16 years ago.

The mixed team event made its Olympics debut at the Beijing Games, but most boarders were already familiar with the course at the Genting Snow Park in Zhangjiakou as they had already raced individual competitions there earlier in the week.

Heavy snow began to fall in Zhangjiakou ahead of Saturday’s final, covering the course with a layer of powdery snow. Air temperatures fell to -11 degree Celsius (12.2°F) and visibility was lower than normal.

Australian Belle Brockhoff was earlier taken off the course by a stretcher after she clipped another boarder and fell during a frenetic quarter-final race.

(Reporting by Mari Saito and Winni ZhouEditing by Peter Rutherford)