Shocks were produced in giant slalom parallel snowboard competition today as neither the reigning world champion, a World Championship runner-up and an Olympic silver medallist were able to make the final here today.
The men’s competition at the Sopka Cluster was expected to see a battle between Krasnoyarsk native Dmitrii Loginov and South Korea’s Olympic silver medallist Lee Sang-ho.
Both snowboarders produced the fastest times in qualification earlier in the day when they rode against each other, raising hopes of a potential repeat in the final.
Poland’s team would have other ideas, with two of their riders responsible for eliminating the favourites in consecutive rounds.
Michal Nowaczyk overturned a 0.30 second first run deficit to stun Lee in the quarter-final stage.
Loginov, winner of parallel slalom and giant slalom gold medals at last month’s World Championships in Utah, then suffered defeat to Poland’s Oskar Kwiatowski in the semi-finals.
The result set up a surprise all-Polish final as Nowaczyk negotiated a last four clash against Russia’s Dmitrii Sarembaev.
A dramatic competition continued with Nowaczyk appearing to have the edge in the gold medal race by winning the first run by 0.52 seconds.
The second run saw Kwiatowski catch up and cross the line neck and neck with his compatriot, before launching into celebration.
The photo finish would prove Kwiatowski correct about the outcome of the gold, as he was deemed to have triumphed a slender 0.01 second.
A disappointing conclusion for hometown favourite Loginov continued with a crash on the first run in the bronze medal match, which contributed to his fellow Russian Sarembaev completing the podium places.
Russian hopes of gold had been high in the women’s event with World Championship silver medallist Natalia Soboleva among the field.
Soboleva, sister of 2015 men’s world champion Andrey Sobolev, was one of three Russians to reach the semi-finals of the competition.
South Korea’s Jong Hae-rim stunned the home team by first overcoming Soboleva in the semi-finals.
She then saw off the challenge of Milena Bykova in the big final to secure top spot on the podium.
Soboleva recovered from her semi-final defeat to overcome her team-mate Mariia Valova to win bronze.
Consistency proved the order of the day in the men’s alpine skiing combined competition.
Switzerland's Yannick Chabloz upgraded from the bronze medal he won in the Super-G two days ago.
He began the day with a seventh-place finish in the super-G, before ending fifth in the slalom event.
His efforts produced an overall time of 1min 35.59sec, which proved enough to seal the gold medal.
Russia’s Anton Endzheivskiy would be left ruing a 30th place finish in the super-G, which put him over a second adrift of Chabloz at that stage.
He dramatically rose up the standings by producing the fastest slalom run, leaving him just 0.14 seconds down on the winner.
His fellow Russian Nikita Alekhim was a further 0.2 down after clocking the second fastest slalom time.
Alekhim was left settling for the bronze medal.