Canada's Marielle Thompson claims World Cup ski cross silver medal in Sweden

IDREFJÄLL, Sweden — Marielle Thompson of Whistler, B.C., earned a World Cup silver medal in women's ski cross Wednesday.

The 2014 Olympic champion was second to Switzerland's Fanny Smith in a 600-metre sprint race in thick snow.

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Thompson and the Canadian team will race full-length courses in World Cups on Saturday and Sunday.

"The course got a lot slower throughout the day, so we really had to adapt," Thompson said Wednesday in a statement.

"I had a fast training run and I’m feeling a lot better after some time off. I always love coming back here, I love the big jumps, all the airtime, and going fast. I’m looking forward to the full-length course."

The world governing body of skiing announced earlier this week that Idrefjäll will also host the world snowboard and ski cross championship Feb. 11-13 as a stand-in for the cancelled events in China.

Thompson, the reigning women's world champion, ranks second to Smith in this season's World Cup standings.

Canada's Reece Howden hung onto his No. 1 men's ranking after placing fifth Wednesday.

"I wasn’t sure if I was going to able to keep it or not," said the 22-year-old from Cultus Lake, B.C. "I am excited to get back after it on the full-length course. I’m hungry for more."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 20, 2021.

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