As residents of Park City woke up this morning, they were greeted to temperatures as low as -20. However, once the slopestyle qualifiers were underway, it was clear that the cold had zero effect on this group of athletes. These skiers were hungry. You see, ski slopestyle is being considered for inclusion in the 2014 Winter Games and this event will influence the International Olympic Committee's decision.
Grete Eliassen dropped in as the first competitor of the day and it was on. The women's field was quickly dominated by USA and Canada. When all was said and done, these two countries took 7 of the top ten qualifying spots. Local favorite Ashley Battersby, fresh off her success at Winter X Games, put down a solid enough score to find herself in the #6 spot for qualifiers. Grete Eliassen proved that Norway can hold its own in the world of women's slopestyle and we can't wait to see what she puts together for her runs in finals tomorrow. At the end of the day it was USA's Devin Logan that spun her way into the top qualifying spot for women.
Alex Schlopy bringing it home. Photo: Tom Kelly
Russ Henshaw and Sammy Carlson battled it out for the first and second spot at Winter X and it looks like they are set for a repeat performance. Russ Henshaw qualified in the top spot in men's slopestyle with Sammy following closely behind. Sammy Carlson was on point and consistent today, putting down two solid runs and giving the fans something to cheer about with huge double cork 1260s on both runs. Great Britain's James Woods was the surprise success story of the day finding himself in the #3 qualifying spot. We can't forget about local boy Alex Schlopy who is on a tear and stepping up his game with each run. Keep your eye on him tomorrow.
Today we saw the world's best slopestyle skiers get narrowed down from a field of 66 total competitors to a field of 10 men and 10 women. Tomorrow is proving grounds. Finals begin at 9:30 am with awards to follow in the finish area.
We'll be tweeting live from the slopestyle finals tomorrow. Follow us on twitter @pcski and follow the event at #FFWSC11
Results from FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships:
Originally from the Pocono’s of Pennsylvania, Travis found his way to Park City three years ago and is now our grooming manager. When not in snowcat you can find him skiing or snowmobiling in the Utah backcountry or enjoying the skiing here at Park City Mountain Resort.