Canada’s Jacqueline Legere has long proven that she can handle the rigors of virtually anything thrown her way. The 24-year-old takes part in motocross, mountain biking, skydiving and wakeboarding, and has even worked as a professional stunt performer. It should have been no surprise to anyone when she decided to add Red Bull Crashed Ice to the mix five years ago, and this year the Canadian finds herself on the top of the pyramid, as her victory in St. Paul Saturday night gave her the championship title for the first time in her career.
The championship season did not get off to a great start for Legere. A third place finish in the semi-finals in Quebec City knocked her out the competition and gave her a fifth place finish overall. Myriam Trepanier won that day, and looked like she was going to be the one to beat for the title.
Legere was unfazed, however, maintaining her goal to be the sports top competitor. Moving onto Munich, Germany, she bested Trepanier to claim the victory and get back on track. That still left her behind her fellow countrywoman in the overall standings, but a second place finish in Finland, the third competition of the season, moved her ahead of Trepanier and set up the dramatic race in St. Paul.
In the shootout round on Friday, the women’s skaters were at a disadvantage due to unusually warm temperatures in St. Paul that made the ice slushy and soft. The men competed first, so the conditions were even more challenging as 92 male skaters had left divots in the ice that made the course even tougher to skate on. Only 11 of the 32 women’s skaters successfully completed the course, with Legere finishing third Friday behind Trepanier and American Alexis Jackson. The Canadian was not concerned.
Legere dominated the competition on Saturday night in a race that featured three of the top four women’s competitors in the world. Legere was pitted against Jackson, Trepanier and Canada’s Tamara Kajah. Legere got out to a quick start and sped down the 360-meter course in complete control. Jackson did her best to keep up but Legere was not going to falter on this day. Jackson finished just behind, with Kajah finishing in third.
Trepanier, who lives in nearby Minneapolis, finished in fourth, ending her bid to overtake Legere in the overall standings. Trepanier had to finish in the top four and ahead of Legere to win the title, but the Canadian was having none of that.
The first place finish gave Jacqueline Legere 2,800 points with Myriam Trepanier finishing second overall with 2,300. Alexis Jackson was the highest ranked American, finishing in third, also with 2,300 points. Canada’s Elaine Topolnisky finished fourth overall with 1,700 points.
Featured Image Courtesy of Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool
By Robert Pannier