And it’s not like she ever left, but Anna Segal stood at the top of the podium once again after winning the first ever slopestyle FIS World Freestyle Championships.
On a sunny, but brisk morning in the King’s Crown Terrain Park at Park City, Segal regained some lost confidence after qualifying in the 8th spot and a not-as-good-as-she-wanted 7th place finish at X Games last week. She also left her mark on Australian and freeskiing history.
“It’s a different feeling,” Segal said. “X Games has been the biggest competition in our sport. But (this win) is more fulfilling for representing my country.”
The FIS World Freeski Campionship is the single most important event for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) who is considering the skiing slopestyle event for 2014 Olympic Games.
Anna Segal – © rocmaloney photography
Segal was rewarded for hitting the last two big sides of the jumps, which some of the other girls had a problem clearing and opted for the small sides. She earned a 43.40 and won $6,153.84 (converted from $6,000 Swiss francs).
X Games gold medalist, Kaya Turski was second with a score of 41.70 and X Games silver medalist, Keri Herman came close behind in third with a score of 41.00.
Segal’s run consisted of a lipslide on the down rail, a blind 270 out of the a- frame, a disaster on the flat down box and 180 over the bonk feature. On the jumps Segal did a switch 540 into a huge 720 mute grab and finished off her run with her patented flat- spin 360.
Canadian Turski, did a silky smooth front 270 out of the a- frame rail into a switch 360 over the bonk continued backwards into the first jump, throwing a switch 720. She finished off her run by doing a switch 540 and 540. On her second run she tried to better her run but fell on her 900 attempt on the last jump. Turski opted for the small sides of the jump because of speed issues but her smooth style and grabbed tricks boosted her score.
“The level (of women’s skiing) has really impressed me,” Turski said. “I could name every name in the finals (for the girls) who killed it.”
Herman slid the down- flat- down into a blind 270 out of the flat rail. She then did a disaster on the flat- down box. On the jumps she hit the big side on her first two hits an did a left 360 to right corked 540 and finished with a switch cork 720 on the small side of the last jump.
“I’ve never done two contests this close together,” Herman said about not being able to take a breather after the X Games. “The biggest challenge was to get my head together.”
Finishing out the top- 5 was Kim Lamarre and Devin Logan. Lamarre did a 360 to 540 into her patented zero- spin off the last jump with a tip- top rail line consisting of a 270 disaster on the flat- down box. Logan was the only girl to hit the big sides of the jumps on every hit. She did a 360 to cork 720 into a rodeo 540 but unfortunately landed a little back seat on her 720 which affected her score.
Other stand out performances included Norway's Tiril Sjaasta Christiansen and Grete Eliassen who both threw 900s and Ashley Battersby who threw a 270 disaster on the flat- down box and did a smooth switch 540 and switch 720 off the jumps.
The OIC will make their final decision in April whether or not to include skiing slopestyle in the 2014 Olympics. Some of the things the IOC will be investigating is whether or not there is a lot of media and spectator interest and how accurate the current judging process is, said Sarah Lewis, a FIS representative.
Keri Herman – © rocmaloney photography
1. Anna Segal (AUS) 43.4
2. Kaya Turski (CAN) 41.7
3. Keri Herman (USA) 41.0
4. Kim Lamarre (CAN) 39.1
5. Logan Devin (USA) 36.8
6. Ashley Battersby (USA) 35.9
By Becca Babicz