SILVER FOR TEAL HARLE, BRONZE FOR ELENA GASKELL
What a start for the Canadian team! Teal Harle and Elena Gaskell both climbed onto the Big Air Festival podium at the first freestyle skiing World Cup of the season on Friday in Chur, Switzerland. Harle earned the silver medal in the men’s competition, while Gaskell captured bronze in the women’s. For Gaskell, it was an outstanding return to the competition scene.
Ranked fourth after the women’s qualifiers, she scored 91.00 points with her first jump of the final round—a switch bio 1080 mute grab—to take the lead. When Gaskell’s score was announced, her teammate Megan Oldham of Parry Sound, ON—who was also competing in the final—jumped into her arms.
It was her fourth career World Cup medal.
“I’m just thrilled. To get back to competing and make it to the podium makes me proud. I wasn’t expecting it, and it’s such a great motivator for the rest of the Olympic season. I’m glad it started this way,” said the skier from Vernon, BC. Gaskell made her comeback more than a year and a half after undergoing knee surgery and breaking her wrist. “It’s a great comeback! I couldn’t have asked for better. My expectations were pretty low, but I did want to make the final. To make it to the podium is just incredible!”
The athletes were treated to a supercharged atmosphere in Switzerland to kick off the 2021-2022 season.
“To have thousands of spectators watching, it was crazy. Of course, there were fireworks and light shows. But during the competition, you get into your zone, and you focus on what you have to do,” she added.