Continental Cup Skier of the Year
The Continental Cup Skier of the Year presented one of the biggest challenges of the 2010 FasterSkier Awards. Strong contenders from both the US and Canada entered the mix, with few head-to-head races to clarify the situation. Also complicating matters is the fact that the 2010 Canadian NorAm schedule featured many fewer races than the US SuperTour in 2010.
Continental Cup Skier of the Year (women):
Dasha Gaiazova (CAN). Gaiazova absolutely dominated the Contintal Cup scene when she raced, amassing seven wins in eleven starts, and never finishing off the podium. She won the NorAm overall title by 60 points over Madeleine Williams, and took 1st, 2nd, and 33rd in her three SuperTour starts.
She raced the full NorAm schedule, but did not participate in Canadian Nationals. This opened the door for Rebecca Dussault (USA) to make a run for the honor. Dussault amassed 19 Continental Cup starts, winning seven, and placing in the top-3 12 times. She easily one the overall SuperTour title, was 1st in the distance standings and 2nd in the sprint.
Ultimately, Gaiazova got the nod based on three wins in head-to-head competitions, and the fact that she raced the entire NorAm Cup series. She is clearly the faster skier, and her dominance made up for the lack of volume.
Rebecca Dussault (USA). See above for results. Dussault made a great case for herself, and was easily the best US Continental Cup skier this year, crisscrossing the country to start an impressive number of races.
Continental Cup Skier of the Year (men):
Like the women’s award, the choice came down to a Canadian versus an American – the overall winners of NorAm series and the US SuperTour. The question again came down to how much quantity should count.
Brent McMurtry (CAN). Staying consistent, McMurtry got the nod over Chris Cook (USA), despite starting significantly fewer races. McMurtry still made 15 Continental Cup starts, winning one and placing on the podium eight times. He won the overall NorAm title by 131 points, and bested Cook in five of six head-to-head encounters.
Chris Cook (USA). Cook started an impressive 25 Continental Cup races – 18 SuperTours, 3 NorAms, and 4 US Nationals events. He did not win a race, but placed on the podium six times. He ranked in the top-10 in all four Nationals races. He won the overall SuperTour title, edging out Brian Gregg by just 16 points. Gregg took the distance title and Cook the sprint honors.
Kristina Strandberg (SWE)
Lars Flora (USA)/Graham Nishikawa (CAN)
Kristina Strandberg (SWE)
Ivan Babikov (CAN)
Thursday, April 15 – Rookie of the Year
Friday, April 16 – Collegiate Skier of the Year
Monday, April 19 – Adaptive Skier of the Year
Tuesday, April 20 – Continental Skier of the Year
Wednesday, April 21 – Biathlete of the Year
Thursday, April 22 – Nordic Combined Skier of the Year
Friday, April 23 – Performance of the Year (cross-country, biathlon, nordic combined)
Monday, April 26th – Cross-Country Skier of the Year