BOKWANG PHOENIX PARK, South Korea (Feb. 19, 2017) – Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT) celebrated her second-consecutive World Cup triumph with a win at the official test event for the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games. Shaun White (Carlsbad, CA) also hit his second podium of the year, with a second-place finish at the final World Cup halfpipe event of the year. Chloe Kim (Torrance, CA), who won the first two World Cup events of the season, claimed the crystal globe award as the overall FIS tour winner.
Clark, who is a four-time Olympian and three-time medalist (one gold, two bronze), won the official Olympic test event for the fourth consecutive time after also earning the top spot at Bardonecchia, Italy in 2005, Cypress Mountain, Canada in 2009 and Sochi, Russia in 2013. Clark edged Chinese riders Jiayu Liu and Xuetong Cai who finished second and third respectively.
“This is a huge step for me in my process just coming back from my hip surgery to get my riding back to a really high level. Since last week, I finally feel that I’m back to where I was before I got injured. I have hoped that I can build. It’s awesome to be at a test event knowing that I have a whole year to progess,” said Clark. She added:
“I’m thankful to put down the run I did today, and I’m stoked on my snowboarding and even more stoked to end up on top of the podium. In practice I did some cleaner runs. In my first run, I landed flat a couple of times and under-rotated a few things. It was good to get one under my belt but I knew I could do it cleaner. That was my whole approach: land higher on those walls, hang under those grabs longer because I know that execution is important at those events. That was what I really was trying to do.”
“I’m thankful to put down the run I did today,” Clark said after the event. “I’m stoked on my snowboarding and even more stoked to end up on top of the podium.”
Kim finished fourth on Saturday, while Maddie Mastro (Wrightwood, CA) also made the final, finishing sixth.
On the men’s side, White was leading the event until the third and final run, when Scotty James of Australia put down a run that edged the the two-time Olympic gold medalist from Southern California. China’s Yiwei Zhang took the final podium spot with third.
Ben Ferguson (Bend, OR) and Greg Bretz (Mammoth Lakes, CA) both barely missed the podium, finishing fourth and fifth respectively. Chase Josey (Hailey, ID) was sixth and Matt Ladley (Steamboat Springs, CO) was seventh.
USSA Press Release/ By Courtney Harkin
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