Visa Freestyle International Jan 31 - Feb. 2, 2008 - Skiing Forum - Downhill , Cross Country Skiing Discussion Forum
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Old 01-08-2008, 09:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Visa Freestyle International Jan 31 - Feb. 2, 2008

Deer Valley, UT

Discuss event in here.



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Old 02-02-2008, 09:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Bahrke a Fan at Visa Freestyle Events

PARK CITY, Utah (Jan. 30) - Olympic and World Championships multi-medalist Shannon Bahrke (Tahoe City, UT), vowing to "go out on my terms, not through some injury," says she's not thinking about retirement while recuperating from knee surgery. "I know I can be No. 1 again," she said. She'll be on hand as a fan for the Visa Freestyle International at Deer Valley Resort.

Bahrke, 27, was injured during training for the first World Cup moguls event in Tignes, France, before Christmas. She tore ligaments in her left knee and began rehabbing at home.

"They rebuilt my ACL [anterior cruciate ligament], so now it's just like my other knee and that's been very helpful," she said, referring to her right knee surgery during the 2005 season. "I'm really, really good. I know what to expect, know where to go and what to do so I can ski next season."

Disappointed after the Olympic season, the 2003 World Cup moguls champion considered retirement but returned last year to have one of her best seasons. She won two more World Cup contests, added the silver medal from dual moguls at the 2007 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships and finished by earning her fifth U.S. mogul title last March at Killington, VT, at the Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships.

"Game Ready" System Speeds Rebound
She said one key element in her early recovery has been use of a device, which uses distributes cold and compression to her knee, speeding recovery. The Game Ready system was provided by the U.S. Ski Team Sport Medicine Department for two weeks "and it's been unbelievable. My swelling is about one-tenth of what it was last time, and it's enabled me to start recuperating faster," Bahrke said.

"I strapped it over my brace and it compresses and circulates ice over and around my knee while I'm sitting and even while I'm sleeping. The Ski Team bought two of these expensive machines and I got one for two weeks, which was tremendous," she said.

"It decreased the swelling, which is natural after surgery, and it's helped me get back my range of motion quicker. It's let me get my [leg] extension quicker. It's really amazing."

At the same time, "That's been good, but I also know it's going to be six months before the healing really happens. It's not going to get me back on skis faster because six months is the healing time for an ACL, and that's the way it is. But I'm not losing a lot of muscle mass. I haven't had to start from Square-1; maybe it's Square-2 or Square-4," she laughed.

Bahrke, who came up through the Squaw Valley freestyle program in Lake Tahoe, added, "Before, I said, 'Now I'm an official moguls skier' because I had a knee injury. Now, I'm really an official moguls skier."

Although she's in her 10th season with the U.S. Ski Team, Bahrke said retirement is not on the near horizon. Her results last season and the way she skied through the preseason convinced her she had made the right decision in returning after the Olympics.

"I definitely am coming back. I want to go out on my terms, not through some injury. I know I can be No. 1 again. I have that faith in myself and I want to prove it to everyone.

Bahrke Beans to Debut
"I was skiing the best of my career before this happened," she said.

"When you're injured, you take a step back and, for me, I realized again how many people love and care for you. That recharges your battery. It certainly did for me, just realizing how many care and who support what you're doing."

In the meantime, Bahrke said she is working with her boyfriend to introduce a new coffee line, Silver Bean Coffee. "Silver" refers to her 2002 Olympic silver medal, which she won at Deer Valley Resort, the Olympic freestyle skiing venue. She plans to have some samples for distribution this weekend during the Visa Freestyle International at Deer Valley.

"I won't be skiing, but I'll be there cheering for my teammates at Deer Valley," she said. "They'll know I'm there...and I'm with them all the way."



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Old 02-02-2008, 09:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default A Primer on World Cup Freestyle Events

PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 31) - The Visa Freestyle International World Cup weekend gets underway Friday. Deer Valley Resort will host almost 36 hours of high-energy, freestyle action and is without a doubt the "it" place for the sport with some of the most beautiful and challenging terrain.

Six key topics you should know a thing or two about before all the action starts at the Visa Freestyle International:

History 101
Ski cross has been on the World Cup circuit for five years (Nov. 23, 2003 in Saas Fee, Switzerland) and has broken through the toddler years in a big way. It will join the freestyle big boys at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver when the event makes its Olympic debut.

The 2008 Visa Freestyle International marks the first time a ski cross World Cup event will be held in North America. This also is the first season in which the U.S. Ski Team has fielded a ski cross team.

Deer Valley Resort hosted its first freestyle competition in 1999 with the Chevy U.S. Freestyle Championships and has been hooked ever since. This is its seventh World Cup weekend (2000, '01, '04, '05, '06 and '07 - nothing in the 2002 and '03 seasons because it was hosting the Olympic freestyle contests and the 2003 FIS Freestyle World Championships). Deer Valley also held the 2002 Gold Cup (Olympic selection event) and the biggest events in the sport, the 2002 Olympics and 2003 Worlds. In 2011, Deer Valley will become the first venue to host the World Championships twice.

Great Speeds and Height
Aerialists peak at an estimated 40-50 feet above the ground after skiing on average 25-30 mph down the in-run and off the kicker, launching themselves into the air where they perform acrobatic twists and flips to end with a perfect landing. Sound death-defying? It's all in a day's work for these athletes. But please don't try this at home!

Ski cross athletes will go an average of 45 mph down the cross course four at a time. While elbowing isn't permitted, the four athletes will be vying one way or another for the lead while getting air off the jumps, giving spectators a taste of the X Games action in Utah! SX has been compared to "motocross on skis."

While it may not seem fast when driving down the highway, moguls skiers go about 20-22 mph while skiing through some of the biggest moguls, going off a mandatory two jumps (airs), performing tricks - all in 30 seconds or less. You'll see what "fast and furious" is all about.

The Longest, Highest and Steepest
Deer Valley's courses quickly will showcase the best from the great, according to 2005 moguls world champion Nate Roberts (Park City, UT). The World Cup courses - Champion for dual moguls and Solid Muldoon for ski cross - will push the boundaries for competitors.

Deer Valley is home to the longest and highest moguls course as well as the steepest ski cross track on the World Cup circuit, making it taxing both physically and mentally for the athletes. Adrenaline will be rushing as the athletes are challenged and the crowd is left in awe!

Grace Under Pressure Wins
Aerials and dual moguls are judged sports. Aerialists are judged on takeoff and air (20%), form and execution (50%) and landing (30%) with a formula multiplying the degree of difficulty given to the maneuver. In 2007 at Deer Valley, Jeret "Speedy" Peterson won the night aerials contest despite a snowstorm and moved into the history books with the highest score ever given in the sport, 268.70 points. He won with his signature maneuver, the Hurricane (five twists, three flips), the most complicated air package in the sport.

Like a fine Audi Quattro, dual moguls blends style with speed. While the athletes are going head-to-head, they're judged on turns through the moguls (50%), quality of the two jumps they perform (25%) and speed (25%). The winner of each round progresses on to finals until two competitors remain.

Ski cross is straight-up speed. First two skiers across the finish progress to the next round until the final four are racing for the win.

When's It All Happen?
It's a fast 36 hours.

Friday, Feb. 1 (schedules subject to change)
- 9:30 - 11 a.m. - men's and women's ski cross qualifications
- 6:30 p.m. - women's aerials finals (top 12 make finals)
- 7 p.m. - men's aerials finals (top 12 make finals)

Saturday, Feb. 2
- 11 a.m. - men's and women's ski cross finals (top 36 men, top 16 women make finals)
- 7 p.m. - men's and women's dual moguls finals (top 16 make finals)

You'll Be Thunderstruck
What's a freestyle World Cup without some good food, fireworks, and, most importantly, rocking tunes? At the 2008 Visa Freestyle International World Cup, spectators can count on jamming out to the tunes of the world famous all female AC-DC tribute group Hell's Belles (Friday night) and Grammy award winning hip hop group De La Soul (Saturday night) following the competitions.



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Old 02-02-2008, 09:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Cook 4th in Nighttime Aerials at DV

PARK CITY, Utah (Feb. 1) - Resilient Emily Cook (Belmont, MA) moved up seven places in the final round Friday night to finish fourth - her top results since a podium in 2006 - in the Nature Valley Freestyle Challenge at Deer Valley Resort. "It's still a work in progress, but I know I'm going in the right direction. I'm more confident and comfortable in my jumps," she said. Dylan Ferguson (Amesbury, MA) reached his first finals to lead the U.S. men's squad, finishing 11th.

World champion Nina Li of China won the women's event with 199.16 points to 194.87 for World Cup leader Jacqui Cooper of Australia. Cook, 11th in the morning qualifying during a light snowstorm, had 171.53 after clicking with a full, double-full (three twists, two flips). Jana Lindsey (Black Hawk, SD), the other U.S. woman to reach finals, was ninth.

"It's always a work in progress," Cook said. "I'm always just working on the process, trying to make every jump better. That last jump happens to be a comp jump often, so it's all about the training but, at the same time, it becomes a bigger deal when it's in a competition."

Cook, who lost 2-1/2 seasons after shattering both feet in a training jump shortly before the 2002 Olympics, is back this season after being sidelined much of the 2007 season. She was limited to three competitions a year ago - a World Cup, the World Championships and the Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships (where she won her second national aerials title). Friday night's event was her third event of the '08 season.

"I'm glad to be back in the mix. Last year was a pretty slow year," she said. "For me, it's all about consistency right now - being in the gate every week, completing the tricks that are going to be competitive every week, and putting in 100 percent every week. And every week we're one step closer to Vancouver [and the 2010 Olympics] and being back on the podium."

Stanislav Kravchuk of the Ukraine was the men's winner on the opening day of the Visa Freestyle International. He had 226.85 points with Russian Valdimir Lebedev runner-up in 223.21. Fergson, the only U.S. man among the top 12 in qualifying, had 179.98. Scotty Bahrke (Park City, UT), Zac Amidan (Ogden, UT) and Ryan St. Onge (Winter Park, CO) had problems with their landing in the qualifying round.

Aerials Head Coach Matt Christensen and Coach Brian Currutt lowered the nighttime start for the U.S. skiers from the morning qualification round. The snowy and windy qualifying run meant athletes found slow snow; at night, the in-run glazed and would have meant too much speed and unsafe jumping conditions if they jumped from the same start.

"It was much too fast," Christensen said. "You could really see the track icing up in the lights, and we said, 'Okay, it's getting fast.' You really noticed it in the men's event because they weren't landing. That was all speed issues."

He praised Cook's showing and said they made a goal to do her full, double-full in every World Cup, regardless of conditions so she got more confident in attempting it. "I'm more comfortable and more confident every week," she said.

The Rip It Trick of the Day, honoring the most progressive jump of the competition, was awarded to Cooper for her full, full, full (triple twist, triple flip); she is the only woman competing regularly with a tri-le-twisting jump. She received $2,500.

MULTIMEDIA
For audio of this event click here.

For rights free photos of this event click here.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
2008 FIS FREESTYLE WORLD CUP
Visa Freestyle International
Nature Valley Freestyle Challenge Aerials No. 2
Deer Valley Resort
Park City, UT - Feb. 1, 2008
Men's Aerials (12 made finals)
1. Stanislav Kravchuk, Ukraine, 226.85 points
2. Vladimir Lebedev, Russia, 223.21
3. Renato Ulrich, Switzerland, 222.23
4. Anton Kushnir, Belarus, 215.96
5. Andreas Isoz, Switzerland, 214.99
-
11. Dylan Ferguson, Amesbury, MA, 179.98
17. Scotty Bahrke, Park City, UT
22. Zac Amidan, Ogden, UT
26. Ryan St. Onge, Winter Park, CO
--
Women's Aerials (12 made finals)
1. Nina Li, China, 199.16
2. Jacqui Cooper, Australia, 194.87
3. Shuang Cheng, China, 188.75
4. Emily Cook, Belmont, MA, 171.53
5. Alla Tsuper, Belarus, 167.09
-
9. Jana Lindsey, Black Hawk, SD, 153.06
14. Jaime Myers, Boise, ID
18. Allison Treleaven, Fort Wayne, IN



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Old 02-02-2008, 09:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Puckett 2nd In World Cup SX Qualifications

PARK CITY, Utah (Feb. 1) - X Games ski cross multi-medalist Casey Puckett (Aspen, CO) led U.S. skiers in the qualifying round of the Visa Freestyle International at Deer Valley Resort Friday. Puckett finished second with a qualifying time of 1:05.96, just two-hundredths of a second behind Swiss skier Michael Schmid.

"It was pretty slow up there because of the falling snow, but I'm happy with my run," Puckett said. "When I came down I was lucky that I started early. I hit all the features the way I wanted to and I am happy with being second." Daron Rahlves (Sugar Bowl, CA), who won the X Games SX gold medal Sunday night, was the next U.S. skier, qualifying eighth.

The Visa Freestyle International ski cross competitions mark the first World Cup ski cross event in the Finals are scheduled for Saturday.

"It's really stacked and tight and narrow up at the top, but then that takes away some opportunities to make moves," Rahlves said. "It's likely going to get aggressive [tomorrow]."

In the women's competition, the French led the top two spots with Ophelie David winning with a time of 1:10.99 and Meryl Boulangeat in second at 1:11.31. Sasa Faric of Slovenia was third with 1:11.34. Langely McNeal (Ketchum, ID) slipped into finals in 16th place.

Ski Cross Head Coach Tyler Shepherd believes that with different weather and the pack racing style, Saturday's finals heats will be a different ballgame. He said three feet of snow, from three snowstorms this week, have slowed the athletes a bit from their normal speed.

"The course ran a lot slower today so I think when they come out of the 'Daytona' [the seventh turn in the course] whoever can pinch someone out right there, that's where I think places will be established," Shepherd said. "I'll be really surprised if anything happens at the finish."



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Old 02-02-2008, 09:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Puckett 2nd in First U.S. SX World Cup

PARK CITY, Utah (Feb. 2) - Two time X Games gold medalist Casey Puckett (Aspen, CO) finished second and Daron Rahlves (Sugar Bowl, CA) fourth Saturday in the first ski cross World Cup held in North America at the Visa Freestyle International at Deer Valley Resort.

Davey Barr of Canada won the men's race and Michael Schmid of Switzerland was third on bright and clear day perfect for skiing.

"Coming into today, I was thinking 'Michael Schmid and Tomas Kraus, How am I going to take these guys out?' I didn't even take into consideration what Davey was going to do and he snuck up in there and took off," Puckett said. "I thought it was an interesting start, having that ramp and that little drop off and then that really steep takeoff. It really made it interesting. You have to have good skills to get out of the start first."

Puckett and Schmid were neck and neck for first place until they made slight contact in the middle section of the race, which gave Barr the opportunity to cruise past into first place.

"I was very pleased with the outcome. I was really excited that I had my two top guns, Daron and Casey, in the finals. To have your athletes in the final and have them duke it out for those top three positions is great," Ski Cross Head Coach Tyler Shepherd said. "I was a little disappointed that my other guys - Jake [Fiala; Copper Mountain, CO] and Errol [Kerr; Truckee, CA] - didn't get a little further on, but I was really happy with today's outcome."

Kraus, the World Cup leader had some trouble in the semifinal heat, finishing third; only the top two skiers advance. But he went on to compete in the small final [for places fifth through eighth], taking fifth in the competition, which was enough for him to retain his lead of the World Cup points.

Ophelie David of France won the women's competition and jumped to first place in the women's World Cup ski cross standings. Sasa Faric of Slovenia was second, followed by Emilie Serain of Switzerland in third.

"The starts here were really important. I had to really concentrate," David said. "During the race the key was to find a good balance between aggressiveness and keeping the skis smooth."

Langely McNeal (Ketchum, ID) was the only U.S. skier in the women's finals. She finished 16th.

According to Shepherd, the weather in the final competition was a vast improvement over what skiers had to deal with in qualifications.

"With it being really cold last night and not getting any snow, it allowed those athletes to go faster today and make those passes that you saw out there, so it was exciting," Shepherd said. "I think what the athletes are seeing this week is the most technical course we've skied all year. You have turns that are completely across the hill, one after the other, and then we open it up a little bit only to go uphill. That makes it more important for those guys to hit every little piece of terrain perfectly so they can take that speed they get in the transitions and make the passes."

World Cup ski cross has a bit of a break before resuming competitions overseas in Sierra Nevada, Spain. However, many of the skiers will be competing Feb. 8-11 in the Jeep King of the Mountain tour in Squaw Valley, CA,

MULTIMEDIA
To listen to audio interviews from this event click here.
For a photo gallery of this event click here.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
2008 FIS FREESTYLE WORLD CUP
Visa Freestyle International
Deer Valley Resort
Park City, UT - Feb. 2
Men's Ski Cross
1. Davey Barr, Canada
2. Casey Puckett, Aspen, CO
3. Michael Schmid, Switzerland
4. Daron Rahlves, Sugar Bowl, CA
5. Tomas Kraus, Czech Republic
-
18. Jake Fiala, Copper Mountain, CO
27. Errol Kerr, Truckee, CA
--
Women's Ski Cross
1. Ophelie David, France
2. Sasa Faric, Slovenia
3. Emilie Serain, Switzerland
4. Meryl Boulangeat, France
5. Magdalena Iljans, Sweden



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Old 01-29-2009, 11:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Default The Salomon Jib Academy Brings Big Fun To Local Mountains

All of the competitors in the Visa Freestyle International and other big comps started off like any kid you see in the park and pipe. Just having fun seeing what they can do on two waxed sticks. Now Salomon is helping those park rats out - bring in their big pros and teaching them the ropes before letting them compete for a chance to tear it up in Mammoth this spring. Willi's Ski Shop is bringing the Salomon Jib Academy to my local mountain - Seven Springs, PA February 7th, 2009 and let me tell you, we have a great crew of kids that rip here. Mark my words - one of them will be in the big lights, I just know it!
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