Will Jacobellis get her redemption? 

The obvious storyline for snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis is redemption.

The now 24-year-old led the snowboard cross race at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, but despite a huge lead, she tried a trick on her final jump. She fell and settled for silver when Switzerland's Tanja Frieden passed her.

Jacobellis has won two World Championships and two World Cup titles. But -- fair or not -- that one mistake has defined her career. On Tuesday afternoon, Jacobellis gets another chance at gold when the women's snowboard cross competition is held at Cypress Mountain.

But if that's the storyline fans and media have in mind, Jacobellis wants no part of it. She remembers a poor first-round performance at Torino that almost ended her medal hopes. Jacobellis persevered and fought her way to the final.

"So I look back and say that I still made it and I still got a medal," Jacobellis said. "And that's good enough for me. It keeps me hungry for the next race."

No guarantees this time around, though. Even under the best of circumstances snowboard cross is unpredictable. Jacobellis must fend off Canadians Dominique Maltais -- the bronze medalist in 2006 -- and Maelle Ricker, fourth at Torino. Norway's Helene Olafsen won last year's World Championships.

"I approach every race with the same amount of passion and energy," Jacobellis said. "I want to win every time. I know that doesn't happen, but I know I have the ability and it's a new year and it's going to be a new day."

bmcnally@washingtonexaminer.com

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Brian McNally

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I've been given the chance to write about some of the best athletes in the world. Can't imagine a job more fun than that.
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