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Freestylers return to Lake Placid

January 12, 2017
By staff , Lake Placid News

LAKE PLACID - Freestyle moguls and aerials athletes return to competition this week with the World Cup event in Lake Placid. The moguls competition will take place Friday at Whiteface Mountain. Aerial athletes will compete under the lights Saturday at the Olympic Jumping Complex.

Freestyle athletes have been competing at Lake Placid for more than 30 years. It was minted as a stop on the FIS Freestyle World Cup tour in 1985, five years after the community hosted the 1980 Olympic Winter Games. Although freestyle skiing was not a part of the 1980 Games, the lingering Olympic spirit fuels strong athletic performances from international and U.S. skiers alike.

The event was canceled last year due to unseasonably warm weather conditions.

Article Photos

A competitor goes upside-down during the 2015 World Cup moguls event at Whiteface Mountain in Wilmington.
News file photo — Lou Reuter

"The freestyle World Cup is a highlight for our community every winter," said Olympic Regional Development Authority President/CEO Ted Blazer. "The staff at Whiteface Mountain and the Olympic Jumping Complex have been working hard to put together world-class venues for these athletes to compete on. We are looking forward to hosting the international teams as well as our U.S. team for their first home-snow event of the season."

Home to the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association's (USSA) Elite Aerial Development Program, many of the U.S. athletes have lived and trained at Lake Placid's Olympic Training Center and grew up competing at Whiteface or the Olympic Jumping Complex. U.S. athletes have had an impressive 84 moguls and aerials World Cup podium finishes on the venues in Lake Placid and, with 33 athletes on the start list this year, there's plenty of potential to raise that number.

"Lake Placid is where most of our teams' aerials careers began, so it's the ultimate home field advantage," said Mac Bohonnon, who won the men's aerials competition in 2014. "A lot of the freestyle team grew up skiing in the east, so it's easy for our friends and family to come out. We're expecting to see a big crowd. I'm excited to be back and motivated to defend my win from two years ago."

Fact Box

LAKE PLACID WORLD CUP START LIST

Moguls

Men

Joel Hedrick (Fort Collins, CO)

Troy Murphy (Bethel, ME)

Tom Rowley (Long Beach, NY)

Emerson Smith (Dover, VT)

Abe Studler (Brant Lake, NY)

Troy Tully (Pleasantville, NY)

Dylan Walczyk (Rochester, NY)

Brad Wilson (Butte, MT)

Bryon Wilson (Butte, MT)

Women

Nessa Dziemian (East Hampstead, NH)

Olivia Giaccio (Redding, CT)

Alex Jenson (Park City, UT)

Tess Johnson (Vail, CO)

Jaelin Kauf (Alta, WY)

Mikaela Matthews (Frisco, CO)

Keaton McCargo (Telluride, CO)

K.C. Oakley (Piedmont, CA)

Morgan Schild (Pittsford, NY)

Aerials

Men

Mac Bohonnon (Madison, CT)

Alex Bowen (Springville, NY)

Thomas Coe (Stafford, VA)

Chris Lillis (Pittsford, NY)

Jon Lillis (Pittsford, NY)

Eric Loughran (Pelham, NH)

Patrick O'Flynn (Penfield, NY)

Nik Seemann (Winter Park, CO)

Women

Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, VA)

Elle Gaudette (Maple Grove, MN)

Kiley McKinnon (Madison, CT)

Megan Nick (Shelburne, VT)

Kira Tanghe (Essex, VT)

Madison Varmette (Stafford, VA)

Winter Vinecki (Gaylord, MI)

The World Cup begins on Friday at 9:50 a.m. with men's and women's moguls qualifications on the Wilderness mogul course at Whiteface Mountain. Finals begin at 1:30 p.m. Saturday night's aerials competition begins at 2:55 p.m. with qualifications followed by finals at 8:15 p.m. Finals for both competitions will be streamed live at www.nbcsports.com/live. Broadcast coverage of the events will air Jan. 14 and 15 on NBC.

 
 

 

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