All for one, one for all!
The youngest of the three Dufour-Lapointe sisters – or “3SDL” as they call themselves – Justine Dufour-Lapointe achieved her dream in Sochi, becoming Olympic moguls champion and sharing the podium with her sibling Chloé.s
The legend of 3SDL began long before their careers reached their peak. Maxime, the oldest, and Chloé, the middle sister, used to coach their youngest sibling on the slopes of Canada’s Mont Blanc in the Laurentians, not far from their home city of Montreal. Quebec is a traditional hotbed of free-style skiing, and like many Quebecois, the sisters’ main passion was for the moguls.
In order to convince the eight-year-old Justine to follow them down the slopes, Maxime and Chloé used to bribe her with chocolate! Their efforts paid off. Described by her mother Johane as “the essence of joie de vivre”, it was the youngest sibling who turned out to be the most gifted of the three.
Under the watchful gaze of their mother who also acts as their manager, the three Dufour-Lapointe sisters have always been inseparable. Maxime first competed in the freestyle World Cup in 2007, Chloé in 2008 and then Justine in 2010, when she was aged just 16. Since then they have travelled and competed together across the globe.
Things gathered pace particularly quickly for the youngest sister. In only her second World Cup competition in Méribel on 20 December 2010 she made the podium in the dual moguls. In her third, a month later, she took her first victory, also in dual moguls, and became the youngest ever winner of a freestyle World Cup event. In that same year Justine watched Chloé compete at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, a moment which inspired her to focus on making it to Sochi 2014.
The three Dufour-Lapointes set out to make history by all qualifying for the Olympic Winter Games XXII, and they achieved that goal in the 2013-2014 winter season. By that stage it was Justine who was enjoying the greatest international success, racking up 24 World Cup podiums, seven victories in moguls and dual moguls and a bronze medal from the 2013 World Championships in Voss Myrk-dalen (NOR). However, in the last international event before Sochi, in Val St-Come (CAN), it was Chloé who took the victory, relegating her younger sister to second place as they secured a first ever family double.
Triumph in Sochi
On 8 February 2014 in the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, with their parents Yves and Johane watch-ing from the stands, all three sisters took to the piste in the women’s moguls. Maxime was the first to fall by the wayside, failing to make the cut for the final round. However, the family remained well represented, with Justine and Chloé featuring among the final six competitors.
The 19-year-old Justine rose to the occasion. Skiing quickly and fluidly, with knees glued together on the bumps and pulling off two huge, perfectly executed jumps, she conjured a gold-medal win-ning performance. Chloé also skied a fine run to finish second. It meant that the two became the first female siblings to secure a gold-silver double at the Winter Games since France’s Christine and Marielle Goitschel in the slalom at Innsbruck 1964.
“What’s happened to us today is completely crazy! Today was my day,” exclaimed Justine after-wards. “I gave everything despite the pressure. We have grown up together, we have gone to the Olympics and we have succeeded together. We’ve made history!”