Dufour-Lapointe, Gingras win at freestyle nationals

Maxime Gingras, of St. Hippolyte, Que., celebrates his run as he wins the dual moguls at the Canada Post Freestyle Nationals at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, Sunday, March 28, 2010. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, CFSA - Mike Ridewood

CALGARY - Olympians Chloe Dufour-Lapointe of Montreal and Maxime Gingras of St. Hippolyte, Que., emerged victorious at the Canadian freestyle ski championships on Sunday.

Gingras won the men's dual moguls while Dufour-Lapointe, 18, captured her first-ever national seniors title, leading her sisters to a medal sweep on the women’s side. Maxime, 21, and Justine, 16, took second and third respectively.

“It’s really nice. It’s a first in a competition at this level, and we’re happy to be together,” said Chloe. “After the qualifications, we said we can do it.”

To make the sister-sweep possible, Justine defeated Andi Naude, 14, of Penticton, B.C., in the bronze-medal dual.

Chloe defeated Maxime for the gold to finish her best season ever. It included a fifth at the Olympics and eighth in the final World Cup moguls standings.

“I’ve had the best season I’ve ever had, and it was just a wonderful experience at the Olympics,” said Chloe.

It was also a wonderful Olympics for moguls champion Alex Bilodeau of Rosemere, Que., who finished third in Sunday’s dual moguls.

He says this was not his best season ever, but one in which he won the most important race.

“I had one great race,” said Bilodeau, 22, who went on to finish fourth in the final World Cup standings.

Bilodeau's final placing was hampered by circumstance and injury. He was winning one race that ended up being cancelled by bad weather. He then suffered a late-season ankle sprain.

Five times Bilodeau has finished fourth or better in the final World Cup standings, including first in 2008-09.

Competing with a sprained left ankle and pain-killers at these national championships, Bilodeau won the singles moguls Saturday and placed third in dual moguls Sunday.

In dual moguls, his ski caught on the starting ramp, leaving him to play catch-up in the semifinals against Gingras.

Gingras, who won that dual, then defeated Eddie Hicks of Whistler, B.C., in the gold-medal dual.

“It's really satisfying, especially because I’m really tired at the end of this season,” said Gingras, who was 11th at the Olympics and still doesn’t know if he’ll retire.

“If it was my last ski in dual moguls, it was a good one,” said Gingras, 24.

Hicks’ first-ever medal at the senior nationals came after beating favoured Olympian Vincent Marquis in one of his earlier duals.

“I really wasn’t counting on that dual,” admitted Hicks, 21, of the national development squad. “I’m pretty thrilled (to win silver). It’s a really nice way to finish the season.”