HALF PIPE CHAMPION DECIDED

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The National Half Pipe Champion was decided today during the third day of the New Zealand Free Skiing Nationals at Cardrona Alpine Resort.



Jake McLeary from Winton took the open men's title as first New Zealander. His smooth runs with consistently big amplitude and style put him well ahead of the rest of the home crowd. However there was fierce international competition on the day and he ranked fourth overall behind Sam Masters (Australia) Nils Lauper (Switzerland) and Japan's Yuki Kadota who came first with some outstanding riding.



Local rider Lyndon Sheehan (15) from Wanaka won the junior men's title with riding that belied his age. In the youth boys 11-year-old Byron Wells beat big brother Jossi (13) into first place. Hamish Acland, Free Skiing New Zealand president, said it was a great result for Byron.



"Byron put together three of best runs with flawless 540s and stylish grabs and amazing amplitude for someone knee high to a grasshopper!"



In the women's Wellington's Pip Simmons, fresh off the plane from the USA, took the national title while Sarah Gillespie (16) from Wanaka came first in the junior division. Another Wanaka skier, Harriet Fyfe (13) won the youth girls.



The nationals finish next weekend with the Volkl Big Mountain at The Remarkables in Queenstown.

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