It hasn’t been a great season thus far for Kimberley sit-skier Josh Dueck. Adjusting to equipment changes, he hasn’t regained championship form and has struggled in races, including a disappointing performance in the recent World Championships in Spain.
Next up were the World Cup Finals in Sochi, Russia, a test event for the 2014 Winter Olympics and Paralympics. Here, Dueck earned a bronze medal in the slalom.
Course conditions were far from perfect in rainy weather. Dueck was seventh in his first run, and conditions were worse in the second but he managed to fight his way to the podium and a third place finish.
“After my first run I knew I had skied well,” he said. “The conditions were poor, but I was able to kind of creep up the field. I knew going into the second run that I would have better conditions because of my start number, so I just charged it and thought, ‘Give all or end all,’ and was fortunate enough to be faster than the rest.”
“The second run wasn’t pretty, but apparently not many other sit-skiers had great runs either. It was a game of attrition and I played it smart. I had good advice from the coaches on areas to be careful for. It was definitely a team effort.
“I enjoy these more challenging days with incremental weather. Today was a step in the right direction and a bit closer to how I’d like to be skiing.”
Monday was the final day of World Cup finals with the Super-G and another slalom scheduled. No results were available at press time.