Fifteen-year-old Chloe Kim was the top U.S. finisher for the women in second, with Olympic champion Kelly Clark third at Saturday's Dew Tour superpipe.
BRECKENRIDGE, CO (Dec. 12, 2015) – It was snowing hard for the women’s snowboard superpipe final at the 2015 Dew Tour, but the American ladies fared well under the challenging conditions, nabbing two podium finishes. Fifteen-year-old Chloe Kim (La Palma, CA) was the top finisher for the women in second, with Olympic champion Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT) third.
It snowed throughout the night Friday and the flakes continued to fall on the women as they competed in the first major competition of the year. Conditions were challenging to say the least, with flat light, a choppy flat bottom and a very slow halfpipe overall. The podium spots went to those that could best handle the adversity.
Liu Jiayu of China topped the field with a run that featured amplitude and technicality. Kim took the second spot with her first run that included consistent amplitude, a frontside 900 and a crippler 720. She looked on track to best her score in her second run but washed out on a frontside 900 and was unable to regain her speed. Clark rode with veteran style, not featuring the technicality she’s capable of but putting together a run good enough to get her on the podium.
Arielle Gold was the top seed going into Saturday’s final. Her run started off with a big Michalchuk, but she was unable to keep the amplitude going through the rest of her run. She finished fourth. U.S. rookie halfpipe team member Maddie Mastro struggled most with the conditions, but dropped in switch to a nice Haakon flip before losing speed throughout the rest of her run. Mastro finished sixth.
For all the rest of the Dew Tour action from Breckenridge, check out the online schedule. Then, go to the Dew Tour livestream to watch your favorite athletes in action. Or tune in to the TV broadcast on NBC.
Chloe Kim had a beautiful first run that put her in the top position. She was eclipsed by Liu Jiayu and unable to answer with her second run when she washed out on a frontside 900.
Kelly Clark rode smart, not throwing any of the big spins she’s capable of, but doing enough to get her on the podium with a third-place finish.
Maddie Mastro is a U.S. Snowboarding rookie halfpipe team member but her presence in the 2015 Dew Tour final proves that she’s on a fast-tracked come up.
The weather stifled what would likely have been a high-caliber women’s final. Snow fell throughout the night on Friday and continued to fall during the competition, creating flat light and a very slow halfpipe.
Chloe Kim The day went so well, I woke up and it was dumping snow but I just tried to stay positive and grateful for the opportunity to be here. I’m super stoked with my riding right now - I didn’t have very high hopes coming out here but after my first run in the pipe I knew I could do this. I had bigger plans in mind but it’s always important to have a plan B, maybe even a plan C. I’m just so stoked on how everything turned out.
Kelly Clark It was a really challenging day, I think for everybody. You have to take days like today and literally reevaluate things - you have to look at what can be successful for you today because what you had in mind usually isn’t in the cards. I mean, riding pow is much more fun outside of the halfpipe.
I struggled throughout practice, trying to figure out how to maintain speed. I’m an aggressive rider and I like to use my edges and I like to carry a lot of speed. I have to adjust how I edge and how I throw every trick (in these conditions). It was probably the hardest scenario for me that I could’ve come up against and so I’m just so grateful to land a run and work my way through figuring out the pipe. If it wasn’t the best snowboarding I could’ve done it was a great accomplishment mentally.