Vaultier claims back-to-back World Cup wins in Stoneham
PIERRE Vaultier appears to be keeping his head while those closest to him are losing theirs after notching a second successive FIS Snowboardcross World Cup win in Stoneham.
The 24-year-old opened the season in Telluride with victory before dropping to third as the World Cup moved to Switzerland and then even further down to 30th after round three at the same venue.
However he roared back to winning ways last time out on Blue Mountain and duly added another win on Canadian slopes to build a sizeable advantage at the top of the overall snowboardcross World Cup standings.
Vaultier took gold in Stoneham with Russian Nikolay Olyunin claiming silver ahead of Jonathan Cheever while nearest title challenger and X Games champion Nate Holland was down in 41st.
That gives Vaultier a healthy lead overall with Holland on 2198.20 points to his mammoth total of 3632 while Andrey Boldykov was fourth and sits not too far behind in third with 2010.
Meanwhile in the ladies snowboardcross event in Stoneham, Dominique Maltais, who won in the absence of the injured Lindsey Jacobellis last time out on Blue Mountain, couldn't record back-to-back wins.
Indeed she could only muster seventh overall after winning the small final with Canadian teammate and Olympic champion Maelle Ricker victorious for the first time this season.
Ricker got the better of French duo Nelly Moenne Loccoz and Deborah Anthonioz, who won silver and bronze respectively, to take victory and ensure Maltais won't have it all her own way now Jacobellis isn't around.
Brit Zoe Gillings must wait yet another round for her first podium finish of the season after placing third in the small final won by Maltais - that performance ranking her ninth overall.
X Games champion Maltais heads up the overall ladies' snowboardcross World Cup rankings with 3560 points with Jacobellis still second on 3000 courtesy of her three wins from the opening three rounds.
However Ricker is closing in and sits third with 2950 just ahead of Bulgarian Alexandra Jekova who was eighth in Stoneham and has a total of 2920.
© Sportsbeat 2012