Freestyle

Wilson Leads USA in World Championships Opener

by
USSA
2017-03-08 11:51
 

SIERRA NEVADA, Spain (March 8, 2017) – Abundant sunshine and great mogul skiing kicked off the first day of the 2017 FIS Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships. U.S. athletes ended the first of two moguls events with a fifth place finish from Brad Wilson (Butte, MT) and a 10th place finish from Keaton McCargo (Telluride, CO).

Spring has arrived in Sierra Nevada, bringing with it plenty of sunshine to soften up the Le Visera moguls course. As the bumps went from hard to more forgiving, athletes were able to progress the speed and put down competitive runs. Wilson did just that, posting the second fastest time in the super final and throwing a big back X off the bottom air that was unfortunately a bit too big.

“The course was tougher this morning, so I tried to ski more conservatively,” said Wilson. “As the snow got a little softer you could really start to let it go. I competed a cork 7 today, which was a new addition to my run. It went well, and I’m happy with my skiing. Just bummed I went a little too big on the bottom air. I’m set to rest up tonight and be ready for duals tomorrow.”


Brad Wilson rips down the Le Visera moguls course during World Championship qualification rounds. (U.S. Ski Team/Greg Heuer)

McCargo, who qualified seventh into the finals rounds, skied strong middle sections throughout the day, but made a mistake on her top air that cost her a trip to the super finals.

“The course was completely different this afternoon,” stated McCargo. “It was more fun and more consistent, making the competition that much harder - any mistake was knocking you out. I thought my turns were great today and I was really happy to do well on my bottom air. I just missed my top air, so looking to improve on that and go bigger and faster tomorrow.”


Keaton McCargo skis to a 10th place finish. (Getty Images/Clive Rose)

Joining Wilson and McCargo in the final rounds was Tom Rowley (Long Beach, NY), who skied to a solid ninth place finish, and Olivia Giaccio (Redding, CT) who landed 15th.

Japan’s Ikuma Horishima made the race for the men’s podium interesting as he bested 2017 World Cup Champion Mikael Kingsbury of Canada in the qualifying round. In the super final, Horishima put down another impressive run, scoring an 88.54. Kingsbury was the final competitor and had the chance to take the win, but he dragged his hands off the bottom air, giving Horishima the gold. France’s Benjamin Cavet was second and Kingsbury landed third. On the women’s side, it was no surprise to see Australia’s Britt Cox at the top of the podium. France’s Perinne Laffont was second and Canada’s Justine Dufour-Lapointe third.

Moguls action at the 2017 FIS Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships continues tomorrow with men’s and women’s dual moguls. Competition begins at 10 a.m. followed by finals at 12 p.m. CET. Finals will be streamed live on www.nbcsports.com/live beginning at 6 a.m. EST.

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Brad Wilson finished fifth in the U.S. moguls team’s first competition at the 2017 FIS Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships.
  • Keaton McCargo was the top U.S. women’s athlete, finishing 10th.
  • Tom Rowley and Olivia Giaccio also advanced to the final rounds, finishing ninth and 15th respectively.
  • Japan’s Ikuma Horishima was crowned men’s World Champion. Benjamin Cavet of France landed silver and Mikael Kingsbury of Canada bronze.
  • Australia’s Britt Cox brought home the gold for the women. Perinne Laffont of France was second and Justine Dufour-LaPointe of Canada third.
  • Competition continues tomorrow with dual moguls.
  • Finals will be streamed live on www.nbcsports.com/live beginning at 6 a.m. EST.

 

QUOTES

Brad Wilson
The course was tougher this morning, so I tried to ski more conservatively. As the snow got a little softer you could really start to let it go. I competed a cork 7 today, which was a new addition to my run. It went well, and I’m happy with my skiing. Just bummed I went a little too big on the bottom air. I’m set to rest up tonight and be ready for duals tomorrow.

[on the men’s team performance]
Our team skied well today. It’s sweet, because we can really build off each other now and use that as we continue to map out what needs to happen next year for the Olympic season.

Keaton McCargo
The course was completely different this afternoon. It was more fun and more consistent, making the competition that much harder - any mistake was knocking you out. I thought my turns were great today and I was really happy to do well on my bottom air. I just missed my top air, so looking to improve on that and go bigger and faster tomorrow.

[on the team’s podium potential in duals]
If everyone skis to their full capability, we can be in those top spots. I have no doubt in my mind that we can all be the best.

 

RESULTS
Men’s Results
Women’s Results