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TORINO: Freestyle: Canada's Heil reigns in moguls as U.S. falters


TORINO: Freestyle: Canada’s Heil reigns in moguls as U.S. faltersSAUZE D’OULX, Italy – Canadian Jennifer Heil won the gold medal in Olympic moguls, while the American women were shut out Saturday, a surprising result for the world’s deepest team.

Heil, skiing the last run of the day, earned 26.5 points, enough to beat defending champion Kari Traa of Norway by 0.85. Sandra Laoura of France won the bronze.

America’s best finisher was Shannon Bahrke in 10th place. But the country’s best skier in this discipline didn’t even compete Saturday night: Hannah Kearney had a terrible run in qualifying earlier in the day and didn’t make it to the finals. Jillian Vogtli was 11th and Michelle Roark 18th.

Heil’s jumps — a 360-degree spin and a backflip with her skis crossed — weren’t as difficult as those that Traa performed. But Heil, the World Cup champion the last two years and leading the standings again this season, gets down the hill faster than most and handles the moguls better.

Speed and form on the moguls count for 75 percent, which outweighed Traa’s ”D-Spin” on the top ramp — a double-twisting jump in which her body goes nearly parallel to the mountain.

”I just felt so well-prepared,” Heil said. ”I was more relaxed than I’ve ever been in the start gate, which actually surprised me. But I knew it was just a sign I was ready to go out.”

With Heil standing atop the winner’s platform for the ceremony, the announcer introduced the winner as being from the United States. The Canadian’s mouth went agape, the crowd booed and groaned, then quickly, the mistake was corrected.

The prospects of an American on the podium nose-dived early.

Kearney’s day was over almost as soon as it began, when her right ski kicked up on only the second turn of her run. She landed awkwardly after her first jump, and that caused her to ram through the moguls — not around them — for the next several turns.

”I don’t know. I messed up,” she said. ”I was shaky through those moguls. I tried to gain my composure and finish the run.”

She watched the finals from the bottom of the hill, a headband replacing her ski helmet.

Bahrke said, “It just wasn’t my day. I put down the best run that I could. … I made some mistakes in the midsection, but for this day, that’s all I had. … The level of skiing is just so amazing from everyone.”

Vogtli said she was pleased with her run. “I’ve been working on the cork 7 and I’ve been taking some big, big hits, all with the intent on doing it here. I switched lines for the competition run — it was much easier to see.”

“I really went for it, but I didn’t have it,” said Roark, competing in her first Olympics. “I was long with the landing path.”

This is the first Olympics in which inverted aerials (skier’s feet above their head) have been allowed. Backflips are the norm now, but a few moguls skiers are actually throwing front flips as well.

The men’s moguls event takes place Wednesday, Feb. 15. Competing for the U.S. will be Jeremy Bloom, Travis Cabral, Toby Dawson and Travis Mayer.

- The Associated Press/Bill McCollom

Olympic freestyle women’s moguls

Final

1. Jennifer Heil, Canada, (4.7, 4.5, 4.5, 4.6, 4.8, 6.52, 6.38) 26.50.

2. Kari Traa, Norway, (4.5, 4.4, 4.4, 4.6, 4.5, 6.18, 6.18) 25.65.

3. Sandra Laoura, France, (4.5, 4.5, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 5.55, 5.69) 25.37.

4. Sara Kjellin, Sweden, (4.3, 4.3, 4.2, 4.5, 4.3, 5.66, 5.52) 24.74.

5. Aiko Uemura, Japan, (4.0, 4.3, 4.1, 4.2, 4.2, 5.82, 5.68) 24.01.

6. Nikola Sudova, Czech Republic, (4.3, 4.3, 4.5, 4.5, 4.4, 4.36, 4.53) 23.58.

7. Kristi Richards, Canada, (3.9, 4.2, 4.1, 4.1, 4.1, 5.13, 5.13) 23.30.

8. Audrey Robichaud, Canada, (4.0, 4.0, 4.2, 4.3, 4.2, 5.41, 5.41) 23.10.

9. Deborah Scanzio, Italy, (3.8, 4.0, 3.5, 4.2, 4.1, 5.00, 5.14) 23.00.

10. Shannon Bahrke, United States, (4.6, 4.0, 4.0, 4.3, 4.3, 4.34, 4.34) 22.82.

11. Jillian Vogtli, United States, (4.4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.2, 4.4, 3.89, 3.89) 22.72.

12. Stephanie St. Pierre, Canada, (3.9, 4.2, 4.1, 4.3, 3.9, 4.86, 4.72) 22.52.

13. Daria Serova, Russia, (3.8, 3.5, 3.8, 4.0, 3.8, 5.28, 5.38) 22.44.

14. Manuela Berchtold, Australia, (4.1, 4.3, 4.2, 4.1, 4.2, 4.40, 4.14) 22.21.

15. Tae Satoya, Japan, (3.3, 3.8, 3.7, 3.8, 4.0, 4.94, 4.66) 22.12.

16. Marina Cherkasova, Russia, (3.8, 4.0, 4.0, 3.5, 4.2, 4.44, 4.44) 22.05.

17. Margarita Marbler, Austria, (3.3, 3.8, 3.0, 3.6, 3.8, 4.79, 4.20) 20.79.

18. Michelle Roark, United States, (3.5, 3.2, 2.9, 2.8, 3.1, 4.86, 4.72) 20.04.

19. Ingrid Berntsen, Norway, (2.9, 2.8, 3.8, 3.1, 3.2, 4.85, 4.85) 19.84.

20. Miki Ito, Japan, (2.8, 2.2, 2.9, 1.8, 2.5, 4.16, 4.44) 17.78.

Qualifying

1. Jennifer Heil, Canada, (4.8, 4.7, 4.7, 4.8, 4.8, 6.10, 6.24) 26.67 (Q).

2. Sandra Laoura, France, (4.5, 4.4, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 5.55, 5.69) 25.45 (Q).

3. Sara Kjellin, Sweden, (4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.4, 4.94, 4.80) 24.85 (Q).

4. Michelle Roark, United States, (4.8, 4.4, 4.4, 4.3, 4.6, 5.00, 5.14) 24.45 (Q).

5. Aiko Uemura, Japan, (4.1, 4.0, 4.0, 4.3, 4.4, 5.96, 5.82) 24.20 (Q).

6. Margarita Marbler, Austria, (4.6, 4.6, 4.4, 4.4, 4.6, 4.78, 4.89) 24.15 (Q).

7. Kari Traa, Norway, (4.4, 4.5, 4.1, 4.5, 4.5, 4.95, 4.95) 24.06 (Q).

8. Kristi Richards, Canada, (4.4, 4.2, 4.1, 4.3, 4.2, 4.86, 5.14) 23.76 (Q).

9. Tae Satoya, Japan, (4.1, 4.0, 4.1, 4.4, 4.2, 5.18, 5.06) 23.63 (Q).

10. Daria Serova, Russia, (4.3, 4.3, 4.3, 4.1, 3.7, 5.05, 5.22) 23.49 (Q).

11. Nikola Sudova, Czech Republic, (4.2, 4.3, 4.2, 3.9, 4.1, 4.63, 4.77) 23.31 (Q).

12. Audrey Robichaud, Canada, (4.1, 4.0, 3.8, 4.1, 4.3, 5.14, 5.14) 22.73 (Q).

13. Deborah Scanzio, Italy, (3.6, 3.9, 3.5, 4.0, 4.0, 5.27, 5.55) 22.72 (Q).

14. Ingrid Berntsen, Norway, (3.2, 3.8, 3.8, 4.0, 3.9, 5.13, 5.27) 22.45 (Q).

15. Miki Ito, Japan, (3.9, 4.0, 3.8, 3.7, 4.3, 4.86, 5.00) 22.34 (Q).

16. Manuela Berchtold, Australia, (4.3, 4.1, 4.2, 4.2, 4.2, 3.98, 4.11) 22.19 (Q).

17. Stephanie St. Pierre, Canada, (4.2, 4.2, 4.1, 3.8, 4.0, 4.16, 4.02) 22.15 (Q).

18. Shannon Bahrke, United States, (4.5, 4.2, 4.0, 4.3, 4.3, 3.73, 3.75) 22.07 (Q).

19. Marina Cherkasova, Russia, (3.8, 3.9, 4.2, 3.8, 4.1, 4.30, 4.05) 21.82 (Q).

20. Jillian Vogtli, United States, (4.0, 3.8, 3.9, 4.0, 3.3, 4.37, 4.50) 21.79 (Q).

21. Ljudmila Dymchenko, Russia, (3.4, 3.7, 3.4, 3.7, 4.1, 4.63, 4.35) 21.42.

22. Hannah Kearney, United States, (3.7, 3.4, 3.4, 3.2, 3.4, 4.44, 4.30) 20.80.

23. Mariangela Fabia Parravicini, Italy, (3.2, 3.5, 3.0, 3.6, 3.8, 3.73, 3.87) 19.62.

24. Nina Bednarik, Slovenia, (3.7, 3.6, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.48, 3.56) 19.54.

25. Darya-Vladimirovna Rybalova, Kazakhstan, (3.3, 3.7, 3.1, 3.4, 3.4, 3.60, 3.60) 18.70.

26. Sarka Sudova, Czech Republic, (3.8, 3.0, 3.4, 3.4, 3.2, 4.02, 3.88) 18.64.

27. Miyuki Hatanaka, Japan, (2.9, 3.0, 2.8, 3.3, 3.2, 4.02, 3.74) 18.61.

28. Yuliya Rodionova, Kazakhstan, (2.7, 3.3, 3.1, 2.9, 3.3, 2.39, 2.45) 16.76.

29. Nuria Montane, Spain, (1.5, 2.0, 1.7, 1.8, 2.0, 2.09, 1.87) 11.76.

30. Chae Rin Yoon, South Korea, (0.8, 1.2, 0.8, 0.8, 0.6, 1.03, 1.20) 7.07.

Freeskiing: Olenick siblings claim Aspen/Snowmass Open trophiesTORINO: Freestyle: Kearney fails to qualify for moguls finals

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