Huser pays back de le Rue in ultracross |

Huser pays back de le Rue in ultracross

Aspen Times Staff
Dominique Taylor Xavier de le Rue leads Marco Huser and Nate Holland off a jump Sunday during the X Games ultracross at Buttermilk in Aspen. Dominique Taylor photo/Vail Daily.

Marco Huser was in the same position about 24 hours earlier – trailing Xavier de le Rue in the finals of the men’s boardercross. He was unable to overtake him, however, and was forced to settle for third place and a bronze medal – his first at the Winter X Games.Sunday was a different story, though. Huser of Glarnerland, Switzerland, was again trailing de le Rue in ultracross as the pair quickly approached the finishline in the finals of the snowboard-skiing relay race. This time Huser pumped away and slipped by his main competition and crossed the finish line first to give him and his partner, Eric Andersson, of Nora, Sweden, gold medals.

It was quite a Winter X Games for the duo. Huser was the final qualifier from Friday’s boardercross seeding run and went on to capture firsts in both the quarterfinal and semifinal heats Saturday to earn a berth in the final.He then battled his way into third place for his first-ever X Games medal. Sunday’s gold was the first medal for Andersson in his six appearances. His previous best was a tie for ninth in Ultracross in his debut in 2000.

“The race was amazing,” said Huser. “I got out of the gate third and kept gaining momentum. I passed one person and then passed de le Rue. He’s the best and once I passed him I knew I could win.””The race was incredible,” said Andersson. “It was an intense competition. Marco had an amazing race to beat de le Rue.”

De le Rue, of Saint Lary, France, continued his strong performance in ultracross as he and teammate Davey Barr of Whistler, B.C., captured second. It was de le Rue’s third medal in as many years in the discipline (one gold, two silver); it marked Barr’s first time on the medal stand at Winter X.The team of Nate Holland, of Squaw Valley, Calif., and Vail’s Eric Archer each claimed their second career medals in ultracross by adding bronzes. Holland won a gold in 2004 and Archer won silver in 2002.

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