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Saturday, February 2, 2013
Wise, Bowman win U.S. Grand Prix

By Meredith Richardson

PARK CITY, Utah -- The 2013 U.S. Grand Prix ski halfpipe finals read like a history book of X Games Aspen. David Wise took the gold with his signature back-to-back double corks while X Games Aspen silver medalist, Torin Yater-Wallace, landed a close second place and Frenchman Kevin Rolland -- who took fourth in Aspen -- claimed third.

Coming off of his victory at X Games, Wise did not find his win at the Grand Prix finals on Saturday easy. Qualifying lower than usual and taking a spill on his second run put a newfound pressure on the gold medalist. "It was unfamiliar territory for me to be at the bottom watching," said Wise. "Usually I qualify high so I get to drop in toward the end, but I was right in the middle of the field today. So, I did my second run, fell, knew my score wasn't going to improve and then I had to watch all the best guys in the world drop in after me. That was pretty nerve-racking."

Wise used what he calls his "banner run" to clutch his second straight gold and U.S. championship title. He lead with a rightside 720 mute to a switch leftside double cork 1080 japan, followed by a rightside double cork 1260, mirroring it on the left with another double cork 1260, and capping it off with an alleyoop flatspin for a winning score of 93.8.

Tailing him by only a fraction of a point, Yater-Wallace's second run got him the silver with a double cork 12 to leftside 10 followed by a switch 720 to an alleyoop double flatspin 9, earning him a 93.6.

"After the first run, I knew I needed to mix it up," said Yater-Wallace. "I decided to do another double like Kevin and David to get me on the podium and it worked."

X Games Aspen SuperPipe gold medalist Maddie Bowman is making a home for herself at the top of the women's podium, claiming her third straight gold and a U.S. championship title on Saturday at the U.S. Grand Prix ski halfpipe finals. Every win puts her one step closer to a spot on the Olympic team.

"Coming off every win is great," said Bowman. "I try not to think about the Olympics too much. I'm just trying to have fun and not put too much pressure on myself." Japan's Ayana Onozuka landed the silver and Switzerland's Virginie Faivre took the bronze.

Several competitors were forced to forfeit a run due to injury during practice or finals. Brita Sigourney, Benoit Valentin, and Simon D'Artois all found themselves at the bottom of their heats due to incomplete runs while sustaining minor injuries.

U.S. Halfpipe Grand Prix, Park City, Utah: Women's Results

Place Name Points
1 Maddie Bowman 85.2
2 Ayana Onozuka 84.4
3 Virginie Faivre 82.8
4 Anais Caradeux 82.6
5 Roz Groenewoud 82.2

U.S. Halfpipe Grand Prix, Park City, Utah: Men's Results

Place Name Points
1 David Wise 93.8
2 Torin Yater-Wallace 93.6
3 Kevin Rolland 93.0
4 Thomas Krief 91.8
5 Aaron Blunck 91.4