Masters earns first podium at IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup in Canmore, Alberta
CANMORE, Alberta – At the International Paralympic Committee Nordic Skiing World Cup in Canmore, Alberta, on Monday, Team USA earned four top-10 finishes in cross-country events including a bronze medal.
Oksana Masters (Louisville, Ky.) led the way for Team USA with a bronze in the women’s 5-kilometer sit-ski race. It is the first cross-country podium for Masters, a London 2012 Paralympic gold medalist in rowing who is in her first season with the U.S. Paralympics Nordic Skiing Development Team.
Also racing the women’s 5km race were Monica Bascio (Evergreen, Colo.) and Tatyana McFadden (Clarksville, Md.), who have experienced success in summer sports as well as Nordic skiing events.
Bascio, a two-time U.S. Paralympian in Nordic skiing who is back on snow after three seasons as a cyclist, finished 10th in Monday’s race. Bascio, who won two silver medals at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, was named the 2012-13 Paralympic SportsWoman of the Year by the United States Olympic Committee in October for her cycling accomplishments last season.
McFadden finished 11th overall. McFadden, a three-time U.S. Paralympian in wheelchair racing, who this year became the first athlete to win four major marathons in a single year, has seen immediate success since beginning Nordic skiing last season.
Also racing for Team USA on the women’s side was Beth Requist (Grand Lake, Colo.), who crossed the line in 14th place.
In the men’s 5km sit-ski race, Navy Lt. Cmdr. Dan Cnossen (Topeka, Kan.) was the highest finisher for Team USA, racing to 9th place overall.
U.S. Paralympian Sean Halsted (Spokane, Wash./Twin Lakes, Idaho), an Air Force veteran, finished 15th.
Vancouver 2010 Paralympic bronze medalist Andy Soule (Pearland, Texas), an Army veteran, was close behind in 16th, while Marine Corps veteran Travis Dodson (Deming, N.M.) crossed the line in 17th.
Cross-country competition continues in Canmore through Dec.12, with the sprint events taking place on Tuesday. The biathlon portion of the world cup runs from Dec. 14-17.
The U.S. Team that will compete at the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games will be named no later than Jan. 31, 2014, and will be determined on a points system that includes world cup results throughout the season.
Team USA will send 17 athletes in total to compete in Nordic skiing events in Sochi, a significant increase from the six-member team that competed at the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.
For more information, please contact Caryn Maconi, U.S. Paralympics, at 719-866-2196 or Caryn.Maconi@usoc.org.