The Visa U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix presented by The North Face has invaded Park City Mountain Resort; this morning both the men and women took on the slopestyle course in what were the first and second of eight final rounds scheduled between Friday and Saturday. A hectic program, indeed…
Of the five Olympic qualifiers to take place on North American soil this season, three are now in the books (Dew Tour, Grand Prix @ Copper and Grand Prix @ Breck), and today’s contest, along with tomorrow’s happenings, mark the final two. The U.S. Olympic team naming ceremony will take place following the conclusion of Saturday’s events.
Just a short while ago, under blue skies, on a slopestyle course groomed to perfection, it was Park City’s own Alex Schlopy who took the win on the men’s side, and Devin Logan who earned top honors among the ladies.
Behind Schlopy on the podium were Bobby Brown and Gus Kenworthy. In fourth and fifth, completing a top five sweep for the Americans, were Joss Christensen and McRae Williams. Schlopy, Christensen and Williams are all local to Park City.
Rounding out the women’s podium: Dara Howell, in second, and Kaya Turski, third. This marked Turski’s first return to competition following knee surgery in August. Turski exclaimed, while standing on the podium, “Go Canada!” She expressed dissatisfaction that the U.S. took top spot today and she joked, “Just wait until the Olympics!”
We spoke with the winners following the contest:
How’s that for a first-place trophy?
After finishing 7th at Dew Tour, 13th at the Copper Grand Prix, and 9th in Breckenridge last week, Schlopy’s win is a big step towards earning an Olympic berth. His work ain’t done quite yet, though; he’ll be looking to bag another podium finish on this same course tomorrow. And while this may surprise you, given his undying relevance, this marks Schlopy’s first slopestyle podium in some three years.
On the ladies’ side, Logan earns her second first-place finish among the various qualifiers, and thus, she is mathematically locked into a spot on the U.S. Olympic team. Logan becomes the first female to claim a spot on the Sochi-bound slopestyle squad.
Logan, too, shows off her fancy new IRPC branded pickaxe.
With the first two finals wrapped up, we now switch our focus to the halfpipe, where the men and women will compete under the lights, beginning at 4:55 p.m. this evening.
A full photo gallery from the slopestyle contest will be available following the conclusion of Friday’s events. To see results from this morning’s slopestyle contests, follow either of these links: men’s results | women’s results.
For continued coverage from the Grand Prix at Park City, be sure to follow along on Twitter and Instagram. For up-to-the-minute coverage from finals, follow @FreeskierLive on Twitter. Also, for information regarding the event schedule, television schedule and live webcasts, click here.