China takes World Cup Freestyle aerials opener

Posted By: The Ski Channel on December 19, 2009 9:37 am


China dominated the opening World Cup Freestyle aerials competition in Changchun Saturday, takiing five of six podium spots. Belarussian Anton Kushnir won for the men with 247.15 points and the rest went to the host country. Xinxin Guo won for the women with 206.09 points.

It was a tough day for the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team athletes, and freezing cold temp’s seem to take their toll. (The mercury dipped well below zero, Fahrenheit.) Emily Cook was the top American athlete, finishing eighth. Jeret Speedy Peterson qualified seventh going into finals but crashed on his final jump, a double-in (quadruple twisting triple flip, with a double twist on the first flip). World Champion Ryan St. Onge botched his landing on his first jump and just missed qualifying for finals.

“It was a disappointing day,” said Head Freestyle Coach Jeff Wintersteen. “But tomorrow’s another day and we can get back on the horse.”

The World Cup continues Sunday before the U.S. athletes head to Colorado for the Olympic Trials Thursday in Steamboat Springs.