Second gold for Tait-Jamieson
(For immediate release)
August 31, 2010
Second gold for Tait-Jamieson
Even the blokes are proving no match for Massey Albany student Emilie Tait-Jamieson at the 2010 NZ Uni Snow Games in Wanaka this week.
The former elite ski racer blitzed her opponents in the Giant Slalom ski event staged at Treble Cone today, clocking a fastest run of 29.93sec - the only competitor in the 52-strong field to break the 30sec mark.
The victory, in a combined time of 60.78sec from her two runs, adds a second gold to Tait-Jamieson’s medal tally after she won the slalom title on Sunday.
“I don’t think I’ve ever won two races in a row so that’s nice,” she said.
“It was a good course – not too difficult but enough to challenge the more experienced racers.”
Canterbury University’s Caitlin Feasey earned silver in 63.42sec, followed by Courtney Tate, of Otago University, in 64.90sec.
In the mens’ ranks, Canterbury University’s Dominic Campbell claimed his second gold medal by just half a second over Stefan Calder, of Auckland University, with a time of 61.26sec.
Tait-Jamieson, 23, is continuing a remarkable family feat in elite events over the past few days.
Sister Lucie, a finalist in the 2010 NZ Snow Sports Alpine Ski Racer of the Year awards, spent yesterday competing at the alpine nationals at Coronet Peak, while youngest siblings, twins Benjamin and Sophia, performed strongly at the Junior Worlds, placing 11th and 14th respectively.
“Sibling rivalry isn’t an issue – we’re quite cruisey around each other … it’s good to have family alongside and supporting you.”
Tait-Jamieson has an impressive racing resume to her credit after competing and training internationally, including four years in the FIS ranks, before retiring last year.
Tomorrow (Wednesday) she will return to familiar territory at Cardrona, where she spent four years as a member of the resort’s elite women’s team, to race in the skier-cross alongside Winter Olympian Mitchey Greig, of Queenstown.
“It will be good to compete against Mitchey and have some Olympic competition – hopefully she doesn’t leave me too much in her dust … or powder,” she said.
The Uni Snow Games provided an excellent platform to continue competing internationally, with Tait-Jamieson a member of the New Zealand team which attended the 2009 World University Winter Games – the second largest winter sports event behind the Olympics – in China. She now has her sights firmly set on the 2011 event in Turkey in January.
“I think in New Zealand the perception is that its’ fun and students just having a good time, but in reality internationally it’s very competitive with only the elite selected to compete,” she said.
“China was huge – it was a great experience.”
University sport also had a valuable role to play in terms of increasing participation in snow sports.
“It’s really great that students of varying abilities are still able to race and don’t feel intimidated by the seriousness of competition,” she said.
Tomorrow (Wednesday) the highly-anticipated skier-cross and Burton boarder-cross events will be staged at Cardrona. The action continues with the Mad Wax ski and Burton board half pipe and slopestyle events at Snow Park on Thursday, followed by the Big Air on Friday. The neighbouring Snow Farm will host cross country skiing on Friday afternoon – which Tait-Jamieson has also entered.
“I’ve never done cross-country skiing in my life but the opportunity was there so why not take it,” she said.