Junior Snowboarder, Tess Coady, 16, has won double championship titles in Slopestyle and Big Air events in the 2017 Snowboard Junior World Championship in Spinderluv Mlyn in the Czech Republic this weekend.
Coady is the first Australian snowboarder ever to win a Junior World Championship and the fifth Australian snowsports athlete to be crowned a World Champion in her class this season.
She follows the record breaking success of fellow athletes; mogul skier Britt Cox, snowboarder Scotty James, para-alpine skier Mitchell Gourley and para-snowboarder Joany Badenhorst who are all current World Champions in their disciplines.
“I didn’t expect that at all. Two gold medals in two days, I am really stoked“ the 16-year old told the International Ski Federation (FIS) after her win.
She qualified second going into the slopestyle final and pulled out a monster trick on her first rail that she learnt a few days earlier; a switch back board slide 270 out, putting her in the top spot with a score of 94.25. In the Big Air, she qualified first for the finals and then nailed her two runs securing the podium topping score of 167.25.
Her outstanding results follow an equally exceptional debut on the World Cup circuit and the World Championships this season, where she came sixth in two World Cups and 11th in the 2017 World Championships in slopestyle up against the best snowboarders in the world.
“It’s been the best winter sports results Australia has ever seen,” said Michael Kennedy, Ski & Snowboard Australia CEO. “We’ve had multiple World Champions, World Cup winners, medalists and series champions across eight ski and snowboard disciplines. The spread of performances is unprecedented and demonstrates the breadth and depth of our programs.” He said.
The World Championships are second only to the Olympic Games and are held every two years, bringing together the world’s best riders to fight it out for the World Championship honour. The Junior World Championships are held every year and are a pinnacle event for young athletes under the age of 18 and can be a launch pad to selection for future World Cup, World Championship and Olympic events.
“It’s been an amazing experience traveling and competing in Spain, Austria and Czech Republic for the past month.” Coady said. “I’m really looking forward to some chill time at home then back to training at Mammoth Mountain, California. I’m really excited about the future and how far my snowboarding takes me.”
She also thanked her sponsors and supporters for ‘having her back’, including her NSW Institute of Sport scholarship that has given her access to professional high performance coaching and services.
Having only started snowboarding at the age of nine, Coady’s background has certainly helped her impressive progress. She was training as a high performance gymnast and also competed at state level in long jump before her family spent a week in Mt Buller where she instantly fell in love with snowboarding.
She competed in Interschools in her first year, igniting her competitive spirit by placing fourth in the Snowboard Cross event and continuing to train with Mt Buller’s Transition Snowboarding Camp. It was a family trip to Breckenridge in USA when she was 12 that opened her eyes to the possibilities of the sport, and she hasn’t looked back.
After a huge season, Coady will continue her training in Mammoth Mountain, USA, then head home to St Kilda ahead of the Australian winter season where she’ll compete in The Mile High at Perisher in August and the Slopestyle and Big Air Winter Games World Cup in New Zealand in September.