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Pure New Zealand Winter Games

Pure New Zealand Winter Games

In This Issue

* High speed Ski Cross at Cardrona
* Curling action continues at 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games
* Catch all the action on Sky Sports
* Check out all of the action straight from the slopes
* Keep up to date with all of tomorrow's action on Twitter/Facebook

Also This Month
What's On - Saturday 27th August

9am - 12.30pm, Alpine Super G, Mt Hutt, Methven

4pm - 7pm, Award Ceremony, Downtown Methven

8.30am - 2pm, Snowboard Halfpipe, Cardrona, Lake Wanaka

9am, Winter Triathlon, Snow Farm, Lake Wanaka

4pm - 7pm, Award Ceremony, Downtown Wanaka

8am - 8pm, Curling, Maniototo International Curling Rink

10am, Speed Skating, Dunedin Ice Stadium

4pm, On-Ice Award Ceremony, Dunedin Ice Stadium

7pm, Dog Sledding, Snow Farm, Lake Wanaka, free

10am - 3pm, Mid Winter Market, Remarkables Red Park Barn

4pm - 8pm, Beer Festival, Queenstown Memorial Hall

3pm - late, Skull Candy Big Air, Methven, free
What's On - Sunday 28th August

8.30am - 1pm, Snowboard Halfpipe Finals, Cardrona, Lake Wanaka

4pm - 7pm, Award Ceremony, Downtown Wanaka

8am - 8pm, Curling, Maniototo International Curling Rink

10am, Speed Skating Finals, Dunedin Ice Stadium

4pm, On-Ice Award Ceremony, Dunedin Ice Stadium

7pm, Dog Sledding, Snow Farm, Lake Wanaka, free

8pm, The Jucy Winter Games Meltdown, Lake Wanaka Centre, $35
Small hr

Friday August 26, 2011
High speed Ski Cross at Cardrona

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In a close finish, Australia’s Scott Kneller was the winner in today’s 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games men’s skier cross at Cardrona Alpine Resort. Switzerland’s Fanny Smith showed why she’s ranked third in the world taking the top spot on the women’s podium.

Spectators were treated to one of the most exciting snow sports events of the Winter Games with skiers flying down the course in groups of three and four in a race often compared to motorcross. The first two to cross the line moved on to the next stage of the competition.

Seven nations were represented in the men’s field with 34 riders competing. Today it was Scott Kneller taking the gold with teammate Anton Grimus in a very close second. Swizterland’s Kevin Amacker rounded out the podium in third place.

Kneller, who forgot his ski pants today and raced in his track pants, was very happy with his win, “It was close and Anton was right on my heels,” he said. “He’s won the last few races so it was good to come out in the lead today. Having him right behind me made me push harder. At one point he washed out a turn and I thought I’d lost him but he managed to stay right in behind me.”

Kneller commented on the value of having an international event of this level in New Zealand. “It’s great to be here and racing at an international level. It’s an awesome way to start the season and good to have the momentum going in a positive direction. The course was fantastic and the organization top notch.”

Angus Rose was the top-placing kiwi in the men’s field taking fourth place. Usually you’ll find Angus coaching some of New Zealand’s top athletes but today, according to one of his protégés, Mitchey Greig, he decided he wanted in on the action and showed that he’s certainly capable. This was Rose’s second ever skier cross competition having been a top ski racer in his day.

While the women’s field was small, it featured some heavy hitters including number three-ranked Fanny Smith, along with Mitchey Greig (ranked 32) and Katya Crema (ranked 35).

In the end it was Fanny Smith taking the gold, followed by Australia’s Katya Crema and New Zealand’s own Mitchey Greig in second and third, respectively.

“It’s great to be here in New Zealand with the crew I usually compete with on the circuit,” said Smith. “The competition was tough and I’m happy to start my season this way. This is my second time in New Zealand; I was here last year for the Junior World Championships and hope to be back again next year. It’s great to get the training underway early and to be able to compete at an international level.”

New Zealand’s Mitchey Greig who made a short comeback at the Winter X Games in Aspen after injuring her shoulder last year ended up leaving Aspen with another injury and hasn’t competed since. “I’m stoked with my result today,” said Greig. It’s great to be on course with Fanny and Katya and to get back on my skis with a good result.”

Curling action continues at 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games

There was plenty of action at the Maniototo Curling International ice rink today as the curling teams fought for a place in the semi-finals.

The Men’s Fours were played yesterday afternoon. Australia played the New Zealand Juniors and led from the start. On their last delivery of the sixth the Australian team set up a guard to protect their shot stone and two other stones in the house. Sam Miller delivered a beautiful hit and roll to get shot to take 1 point. In the seventh the Juniors had shot stone with four Australian stones also in the house and delivered their last stone to sit front of house. The Australians last stone was tight and hit the guard leaving the Juniors with shot stone and giving them another point. On the last delivery of the eighth the Juniors stone was too heavy and finished at the back of the house. The Australians picked up 3 points and an 11-3 win.

The New Zealand Seniors played Japan. At the end of the sixth Japan was 5 points ahead 7-2. The Seniors had shot and another in the house and set up a guard on their last delivery. Japan took out the Seniors’ second stone leaving them with shot and 1 point. Japan answered with 4 points over the next two ends giving them the game at 11-3. David Greer from the New Zealand team put it down to opportunity. “We had our chances – they gave us a lot and we took one or two but missed quite a few too. The 3 pointers that we lost hurt us. There shouldn’t have been that big a margin on the scoreboard the way the teams played. The end that we did play really well we managed to create a steal and nearly stole two.”

The New Zealand Men played China in a gripping, low-scoring game with four blank ends (ends without a score). It was 4-2 to China after nine ends It was an exciting tenth end with New Zealand having the advantage of the hammer and needing to score at least 2 points to stay in the game. On their last delivery China managed to take out the New Zealand stone to get their stone in the house. New Zealand attempted to raise their stone back onto shot stone but it didn’t work out as planned and they lost to China 2-5. Korea had the bye.

The Mixed Doubles was the first game on the final day of round robin events. New Zealand played Australia in an exciting match watched by a number of spectators. Australia’s 4 points in the fifth end helped them get a 9-6 lead after seven ends. On Australia’s last delivery of the eighth they delivered a long run back to reduce the number of New Zealand stones in the house. They tried to get two stones out but only managed to get one. New Zealand had shot with two stones in the house and delivered their last stone to also sit in the house and get the 3 points they needed to draw with Australia 9 all. An extra ninth end was played and Australia picked up 1 point to put them ahead 10-9.

Japan played Finland and they won alternate ends. Japan was 6-3 ahead at the end of the seventh. In the final eighth end Finland had five stones in the house but Japan had shot. On Japan’s last delivery they hit their guard with their stone sitting right on the front of the house. It was a difficult last shot for Finland who needed to secure 3 points to draw or 4 points to win. Paavo Kuosmanen drew a fast stone that failed to curl and knock Japan’s shot stone out of the way. Japan won 7-3. Japanese player Tomoko Tomabechi said “We are relieved we won today’s game and can now go to the semi-final tomorrow. We want to challenge Switzerland because they beat us last time and we want to enjoy the game.”

Hungary played China. Hungary started strong gaining a 5-0 lead after the first three overs and had a 6-2 lead after the first six ends. Hungary picked up an extra 2 points in the seventh winning the game 8-2. Latvia played the USA. It was a close game through to the sixth end when Latvia picked up 4 points. in the sixth end and was ahead at the end of the seventh and eventually won 8-4. Switzerland had the bye.

The Women’s Fours played the second game of the morning. China had won all of their games going into the game so there was plenty of crowd support for their rival team Japan. It was a tight game that was 5 all after the sixth end and 7 all at the end of the ninth. Japan had the advantage of the hammer as they went into the tenth. There were two stones of each in the house as China delivered their final stone. Their hit and roll that slightly too heavy but took shot stone. Japan delivered a beautiful draw weight on their last delivery that took shot stone and won them the game 8-7 to much cheering in the gallery.

The New Zealand Women played Korea who was off to a strong start after scoring 5 points in the second end. A gain of 3 points in the sixth end kept the New Zealand team in the running. New Zealand were behind by 1 point 6-7 going into the eighth but came back 7 all after Korea’s last stone of the end failed to find shot. Korea answered with 2 points in the ninth. New Zealand fought back to draw 9 all at the end of the tenth giving them an extra end to play. Korea had two in the house as Brydie Donald from New Zealand delivered her last stone but it was too narrow and Korea won the game 11-9. The Korean team members commented “The New Zealand Women’s Team is a good team and they are getting better and better - our team found them difficult to play. The Naseby ice rink is very good. I think this game and the competition in general is very good.” The New Zealand Juniors had the bye.

The Men’s Fours are currently battling it out for their place in the semi-finals. China is playing the New Zealand Juniors, Korea is playing the New Zealand Men, the New Zealand Seniors are playing Australia and Japan has the bye.

Tonight the Women’s Fours continue with Korea playing Japan and China playing the New Zealand Juniors. The New Zealand Women have the bye.

Catch all the action on Sky Sports

For all our New Zealand followers, don't forget to tune in each night to Sky Sports 3 at 9pm and catch all the latest action from 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games.

Tonight's programme has all the action from the adaptive Alpine Slalom yesterday at Coronet Peak. Also featured are highlights from the Snowboard Big Air at Cardrona and some footage of the Ski Cross competitiors training for today's competition.

Don't miss any of the action - tonight's programme will be repeated at 600am tomorrow morning on Sky Sports 1 and at midday on Sky Sports 2.

© Scoop Media

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