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Jacobellis, Holland defend snowboard cross titles at Winter X Games

January 30, 2010 |  5:18 pm

The first-ever five-peat at the Winter X Games, in itself, was an impressive accomplishment for Nate Holland.

But to even get a shot at it on Saturday, Holland had to avoid a massive crash in a semifinal of the men's snowboard cross. That was almost as impressive.

How did he miss landing in the huge pileup and its aftermath, which sent world champion Max Schairer of Austria, to the hospital?

"I have no idea," Holland said.

The accident caused a lengthy delay on the course.  Medical staff said the Austrian could move his arms and legs and was conscious but was taken to the hospital for precautionary measures.

"I went to the top and I was really in a somber mood," Holland said.

He managed to flip the switch back into competitive mode and held off U.S. Olympic teammate Seth Wescott.

On the women's side, Vancouver-bound Lindsey Jacobellis won her third straight title, beating Helene Olafsen of Norway, who surprised Jacobellis with a strong start.

Jacobellis prevailed despite feeling less than 100%.

"I just woke up this morning and I was really congested and feeling super weak and dizzy," Jacobellis said. "And I tried to take some allergy medicine because I didn't feel like it was a cold at all. I had a funky reaction to it. I was trying to battle through it and drink as much water and flush it out of my system."

-- Lisa Dillman, reporting from Aspen, Colo.