Snowboard - Haemmerle and Moioli on top in Sochi

Alessandro Haemmerle and Michela Moioli timed their first snowboard cross World Cup victories to perfection as they pair finished top of their respective piles in Sochi, Russia.

Snowboard - Haemmerle and Moioli on top in Sochi

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Michela Moioli (AFP)

Being used as a test event ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics, both Austrian Haemmerle and Italian Moioli (pictured) headed to Russia without a victory to their names.

But all that changed as Moioli held off the challenge of France's Nelly Moenne Loccoz and Helen Olafsen of Norway to finish top of the pile for the first time this season.

And Haemmerle was clearly inspired to follow suit as he got the better of American Alex Deibold and fellow Austrian Markus Schairer to pick up his first win.

Both victories did wonders for the pair in the overall World Cup standings with Haemmerle leapfrogging up to sixth overall – his previous best finish this campaign being eighth last time out.

And Moioli now sits seventh in the women's standings, smashing her previous best which was a ninth-place finish from her previous event.

Leading the way in the women's World Cup is still Canadian Dominique Maltais, however the gap has been closed to 740 points after she could only finish 13th in Sochi, Moenne Loccoz making the most of that slip up.

And in the men's competition Alex Pullin is now 250 points ahead at the top after finishing fifth, with Schairer second overall.

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