Three-time Olympian Gerek Meinhardt and two-time Olympian Race Imboden have enjoyed a huge amount of success as individuals and as part of the U.S. men’s foil team in recent years, and on Saturday, both earned individual podium finishes at the men’s world cup competition in Paris.
Meinhardt won the silver medal and Imboden the bronze as the U.S. landed three in the top six while Italians filled the other three spots in the top six. Alexander Massialas finished sixth.
Meinhardt defeated teammate Massialas in the quarterfinals 15-14 to set up a semifinal meeting against Italy’s Giorgio Avola. Italy has been a fierce rival for the U.S. recently, and this time, it was Meinhardt who emerged victorious with a 15-13 win; Avola took the other bronze.
Fittingly, Meinhardt faced Italy’s Alessio Foconi in the championship match. Foconi, who is the top-ranked men’s foil fencer in the world, came away with a 15-12 victory to win the gold medal.
Foconi ousted Imboden in the semifinals 15-12 after Imboden defeated Italy’s Edoardo Luperi in the quarterfinals 15-12. Imboden holds the No. 3 ranking while Massialas is ranked eighth. Meinhardt is ranked 15th.
The top-ranked U.S. men’s foil team swept all five world cup events last season, won the silver medal at the world championships and opened this world cup season in November with a victory over Italy. The Americans will try to make it seven world cups in a row on Sunday.