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Prince George skiers advance to World Cup finals

Races scheduled for Friday and Saturday, livestreamed on

Four days after she won her the first World Cup medal of her career, Prince George ski cross racer Tiana Gairns of Prince George is setting herself up for a memorable weekend to wrap up the season on Canadian soil.

Gairns qualified ninth Thursday at the World Cup finals in Collingwood, Ont., and is among eight Canadians who made the top-16 cut for Friday’s race.

Gavin Rowell of Prince George was 26th with his qualifying run to claim a spot in the 32-skier men’s race.

The 24-year-old Gairns, in her third season on the World Cup tour, is on roll, with five consecutive top-10 finishes.

Sunday in Veysonnaz, Switzerland, Gairns passed Canadian teammate Marielle Thompson going into the final turn and hung on to finish third to take her place on the podium with gold medalist Fanny Smith of Switzerland and silver medalist Jade Grillet Aubert of France.

“It means a lot, the second half of the season I’ve been skiing well and it's gotten a lot of FIS places and small finals and it just came together at that last race,” said Gairns. “Once you’re in the big final you’re in it for the medal and I was in fourth but near the end (Thompson) made a mistake and I was carrying some heat and got past here and got third.”

Earlier this season, Gairns finished fifth in World Cup races in Sweden and Austria.

Friday’s World Cup race starts at 7:45 a.m. PT for the men, followed by the women’s race at 10:30 a.m. PT. The same schedule applies to Saturday’s World Cup finals races. The event will be livestreamed..

Meanwhile, at a World Cup snowboard cross race Thursday in Veysonnaz, Evan Bichon of Prince George, 24, qualified sixth in a field of 61 and finished the race 18th overall.


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