Mike Schultz Leads U.S. Podium Sweep As Para Snowboarders Claim 12 Medals At Klovsjo World Cup
by Stephen Kerr
Mike Schultz celebrates winning silver in the men's dual banked alalom SB-LL1 race during World Para Snow Sports Championships on Jan. 14, 2022 in Lillehammer, Norway.
There was no time to rest for the U.S. Para snowboarding team. Less than a week after wrapping up the World Para Snow Sports Championships in Lillehammer, Norway, the group was back in action this weekend for a snowboardcross world cup in Klovsjo, Sweden.
The short turnaround time did nothing to slow the Americans down, as U.S. athletes claimed 12 medals, including four golds, in the final European world cup of the season.
Two-time Paralympic medalists Brenna Huckaby and Mike Schultz led the way with two gold medals apiece, while Keith Gabel, Tyler Burdick and Katy Maddry each picked up a silver. Gabel, Burdick and Maddry also earned bronze medals over the weekend, as did Paralympic hopefuls Joe Pleban and Thomas Wilson.
The performance followed a similarly strong showing in Lillehammer, where U.S. snowboarders won eight medals including three golds.
Schultz, a silver medalist in Lillehammer, led a dominant U.S. performance in the men’s SB-LL1 classification this weekend. On Friday he outdueled Chris Vos of the Netherlands in a hotly contested race. The course featured tight turns and little room to maneuver, and the race was neck-and-neck through the final corner. Burdick, a 2014 Paralympian, finished behind Vos to capture the bronze.
One day later, Schultz led a podium sweep in the second men’s SB-LL1. Schultz took the gold, while Burdick grabbed the silver and Wilson the bronze.
“Feels good to stand on top🥇,” Schultz posted on Twitter Friday.
Feels good to stand on top🥇 https://t.co/A2uOkVPjrO
— Mike Schultz (@MonsterMike5) January 28, 2022
Huckaby also won each day in the women’s SB-LL1/LL2 class. On Friday she beat out Dutch rival Lisa Bunschoten, while Maddry, who finished fourth in dual banked slalom in her world championships debut, earned the bronze. Paralympic medalist Brittani Coury finished behind Maddry in fourth place.
Huckaby did it again on Saturday, with Maddry just behind her in second.
Gabel, a two-time Paralympic medalist, also reached the podium twice in the competition. He took silver in the men’s SB-LL2 class behind Australia’s Ben Tudhope on Friday, with Pleban just behind in bronze. Gabel captured the bronze medal on Saturday.
The 12 medals in Klovsjo give Team USA a total of 44 in world cup competition this season, with 17 coming in snowboardcross. Select U.S. team members will compete in Big White, British Columbia, Canada, from Feb. 8-12 to conclude the world cup season.