PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 22) - Two weeks after locking down her Olympic spots, Kelly Clark (Mt. Snow, VT) bested the women's field Friday night during the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix victory at Park City Mountain Resort.
Clark edged U.S. teammate Hannah Teter (Belmont, VT) for the win, falling in her first run before making up the ground in a solid final performance.
“I've always loved competing in Park City,” said Clark, who won Olympic gold in the same pipe in 2002, “They build amazing halfpipes, and it's always fun for me to come back to get to compete and do well.
“I think I will need a tougher run than tonight in Vancouver. I'm definitely working my way up to it.”
Teter entered competition with a second and a third, putting her strong position to contend for the U.S. Team, which Gretchen Bleiler (Aspen, CO) will certainly belong to after fourth place Friday to accompany a victory and two second-place results.
“It feels really good,” Teter said. “I want to go and represent the U.S. in the biggest contest in the world.”
Not to be forgotten in the Olympic picture, Ellery Hollingsworth (Stratton, VT) was third under the lights.
“I'm really excited I landed the run I wanted to land,” Hollingsworth said. “I wanted to bring my 9s into my run, and all week I've been trying to do it, and I landed it in practice, then in my run. So I'm really happy.”
Saturday night's race marks the final chance for U.S. halfpipe athletes to make the 2010 Olympic Team, starting at 6:30 p.m.
After the halfpipe, 30 Seconds To Mars will play a concert before three men and three women are announced as members of the 2010 Olympic Team. The full Olympic roster will be announced Jan. 25.
Fans can watch the finals Saturday's competition live at FuelTV.com.
2010Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix
Park City, UT – Jan. 22, 2010
1. Kelly Clark, Mt. Snow, VT, 45.20
2. Hannah Teter, Belmont, VT, 44.80
3. Ellery Hollingsworth, Stratton, VT, 43.60
4. Gretchen Bleiler, Aspen, CO, 42.50
5. Elena Hight, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 40.00
6. Kaitlyn Farrington, Sun Valley, ID, 39.20
7. Maddy Schaffrick, Steamboat Springs, CO, 31.40
8. Kelly Marren, Hillsborough, CA, 29.40
9. Clair Bidez, Minturn, CO, 19.30
1. Kelly Clark, Mt. Snow, VT, 1000
2. Gretchen Bleiler, Aspen, CO, 900
3. Hannah Teter, Belmont, VT, 800
4. Elena Hight, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 650
5. Ellery Hollingsworth, Stratton, VT, 600
6. Maddy Schaffrick, Steamboat Springs, CO, 475
7. Clair Bidez, Minturn, CO, 425
8. Kaitlyn Farrington, Sun Valley, ID, 400
9. Kelly Marren, Hillsborough, CA, 305
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photos Janos Schmidt