Ryan St. Onge Wins World Championship Freestyle Aerials

Posted By: The Ski Channel on March 4, 2009 7:45 am

The USA has another World Champion to celebrate, as Ryan St. Onge (Winter Park, CO) nailed his best jumps today in Japan to collect the gold medal in aerials at the 2009 FIS Freestyle Ski World Championships. "I came out today and I did two nice jumps. One of them was one of the nicest ones I have ever done in my life. Right there, I am very happy and incredibly excited," St. Onge said. "It’s nice to know that things are going well and it’s nice to be able to enjoy it—not just the winning, but to be able to do the jumps that I want to do, compete the way I want to compete and to be able to savor that."

St. Onge, or ‘Peach’ as he is fondly known among (certain) friends, threw a full, double full, full, (three flips with four complete twists) followed by a double full, full, full (three flips, four twists again, but in different order) to win the World’s gold. "All I can think about is his last jump and how perfect it was. It was just amazing," said U.S. Ski Team Aerials Head Coach Matt Christensen. "He’s been more focused on doing perfect jumps rather than looking at the results. That’s what we as a team have been focused on. The results come when those results happen."

St. Onge’s win is the first men’s World Championship aerials gold for a U.S. athlete since Eric Bergoust, who nabbed the title in 1999. (Bergoust also won the 1998 Olympic gold medal in the event, as St. Onge hopes to do next season.) When Peach was but a seedling, the young athlete looked up to Bergoust, and is now happy to reclaim the crown. "Eric Bergoust is my idol and he has been ever since I’ve been jumping," St. Onge said. "Any time I can reach a mile marker in any way that he has, it’s an extreme flattery to me and I just hope that there are more like this."

The rest of the American aerials squad had a solid day for the most part. Dylan Ferguson (Amesbury, MA) finished seventh in his first ever World Championships, and the women saw three U.S. athletes in the Finals. Leading the way was veteran star Emily Cook (Belmont, MA), who finished in fourth. Jana Lindsey (Black Hawk, SD) followed in fifth and Lacy Schnoor (Draper, UT) finished seventh. "Lacy competed her first full double full in competition, and she’s only done four of them now and she stuck it, which is awesome. Jana had her first time landing a double full, full in competition. This is a new jump for her this year. And then Emily, she just jumped so well," said Christensen of his lady athletes. "It was really good to have all the women land all of their jumps. To have all three in the top 10 for World Championships is amazing. You can’t ask for much more than that."

St. Onge after his Deer Valley World Cup win earlier this season, with Lindsey (left) and Schnoor (right).

If the World’s results are any indicator of what’s to come in 2010, the team is on the right track. "Our team is finally starting to peak at the big events and St. Onge just showed that,” said Christensen. “He followed the game plan and did it right.”

The 2009 FIS Freestyle Ski World Championships continue Thursday with men’s and women’s halfpipe.


Inawashiro, Japan – March 4, 2009



1. Ryan St. Onge, Winter Park, CO, 254.66

2. Steve Omischl, Canada, 252.07

3. Warren Shouldice, Canada, 240.14

4. Renato Ulrich, Switzerland, 232.29

5. Oleksandr Abramenko, Ukraine, 2228.56

7. Dylan Ferguson, Amesbury, MA, 217.97

8. Jeret Peterson, Boise, ID, 212.67

- (top 12 qualify)

17. Scotty Bahrke, Tahoe City, CA, 194.12


1. Nina Li, China, 203.21

2. Mengtao Xu, China, 197.04

3. Jacqui Cooper, Australia, 194.32

4. Emily Cook, Belmont, MA, 175.72

5. Jana Lindsey, Black Hawk, SD, 168.66

7. Lacy Schnoor, Draper, UT, 166.80