KEARNEY ICES COMPETITION AT FRIGID LAKE PLACID
by Paul Maraschiello

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Olympic gold medalist Hannah Kearney picked up her second win in two days in arctic conditions at the Nature Valley Freestyle World Cup at Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid, N.Y. It was her fourth straight win in individual mogul competition on the World Cup circuit. Hanna has finished on the podium in five out of the first six moguls and dual moguls World Cups competitions. It was cold and icy, so I dropped my skis off at the shop to have them sharpened by one of the ski bums who work there.



MOGULS
Kearney scored 26.12 to land in 1st place with Chloe Dufor-Lapointe in 2nd with 24.85 and her teammate from Canada, Kristi Richards scoring 24.57 for a 3rd place finish. USA's Heather McPhie finished 6th and Eliza Outtrim was 11th. McPhie and Outtrim were the only women to compete off-axis 720's.

Hanna's final run of the day was her best. One judge gave her a 5.0 for the run. She feels great at Lake Placid which is do near Vermont that her mom, dad and best friend were all there to cheer her on.

For the Men, it was Guilbaut Colas from France who took the gold with a score of 25.70. Canadian Mikael Kingsbury was 2nd with a 25.59 and his teammate Pierre-Alexandre Rousseau finished 3rd, scoring 25.16 in the bumps.



The day before, spunky, blond Hannah Kearney froze out the competition as the temperature hovered around zero. Hannah skied the bumps flawlessly and scored 25.45 to garner 1st place. The Canadians took home the rest of the medals with Jennifer Heil in 2nd with 24.72 and Audrey Robichaud placing 3rd with 24.41.



Men's moguls saw France's Guilbaut Colas win with 25.81. Canada's Alexandre Bilodeau was 2nd with 25.59 and USA's Jeremy Cota was 3rd with 25.31.



Both days, the moguls were hard and icy but these world-class competitors skied them with ease bumping and jumping like they were on soft snow. Frigid temperatures and flat light did not impair their ability to slice and dice in the bumps. Don't let me forget the two mandatory jumps that each bumper was required to perform on the course.



The Canadian Freestyle Ski Team had a successful day in FIS World Cup mogul action with four podium finishes, and a total of eight top-ten finishes in the men's and women's events.

AERIALS

American aerialists Ashley Caldwell was in the winners circle with Alla Tsuper from Belarus in 2nd place with 186.42, Mengtao Xu, China, came in 3rd with 183.82 and USA's Emily Cook just missing the podium with a score of 175.54.

China's Guangpu Qi ook 1st in the men with a score of 250.70. USA's Ryan St. Onge was 2nd with 246.21 and Anton Kushnir from Belarus in 3rd with 241.42.

Skiers were flipping and twisting doing quad triples, going off a 60 ft kicker above the heads of spectators in Lake Placid. 17 year old Caldwell, a former gymnastics took up skiing just a few years ago. This was her first World Cup win. She was the youngest woman on the U.S. Olympic Team last year.



ACCOMMODATIONS
I was staying at the Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort on Main St. in Lake Placid. This is a large resort complex with very classy accommodations. I had a great room with a flat-screen TV over the fireplace. My room had a king-size bed and a fancy jacuzzi in the room that came in handy after a long day skiing. I had dinner at Charlie's Restaurant, located in the hotel. I can recommend the Shrimp Scampi, it was very tasty! They feature innovative American Cuisine, offering seasonal menus that included a tasty full-range chicken and game specialties. The resort boasts a cocktail bar and a nightclub called Roomers. They have a heated indoor pool with sauna, steam room & hot tub. In the summer you can relax on their private, white sand beach. Room rates range from $99 - $269 per night. For reservations call: (800) 582-5540 and tell them that the Ski Bum News recommended them.

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