SQUAW VALLEY, CA – It was the way Squaw was hoping to wrap up the weekend as hometown favorite Shelly Robertson (Reno, NV), along with Jeremy Cota (Steamboat Springs, CO), took the dual moguls titles during the Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships Sunday.
“This is so awesome being at Squaw in front of all my friends and family,” Robertson said. “I’m so excited to win today. This is where it all started for me on this run right here when I was 15. It feels good to finish on this run on top.”
Robertson was joined on the podium by Eliza Outtrim (Steamboat Springs, CO), who marked her second silver of the weekend, and Heather McPhie (Bozeman, MT) who was pulling in another third for the event.
According to Robertson, her fourth U.S. title came with a little luck and some hard-fought skiing throughout the bright day in Tahoe.
“I felt like I got a little lucky on a couple of the runs before, and I wasn’t skiing on my game. I knew I’d have to put it together on this last run,” Robertson said. “I was happy to finally put down the run that I wanted to ski on this last one.”
After a weekend riddled with successes, Outtrim is looking back on what she feels are two weeks that can push her forward.
“It’s incredible. I’ve probably had my best three results I’ve ever had in the last week and a half,” Outtrim said. “They’re my first podiums at U.S. Champs and to get two seconds is pretty sweet.”
Now, Outtrim is just looking to keep the momentum going strong.
“It feels so good and it’s so motivating. I can’t wait to get back and start training again this summer,” Outtrim said.
Absent from the competition, but there watching with friends and family was local hero and Olympic bronze medalist Shannon Bahrke (Tahoe City, CA) who was not racing due to an injury.
On the men’s side, reeling in his first U.S. title had Cota very excited that he could go up against some of the sport’s best and succeed.
“This is my first time winning a national title and I’m definitely psyched,” Cota said. “There’s a lot of incredible skiers in this event and for me to win I had to do my very best, and I was happy to be able to do that.”
For Cota, the day marked the outcome of a season building toward something great.
“The whole season has been a confidence builder. As the season went on I kept doing well and was able to ski my best. It kept building and here I am,” Cota said.
In the end, Cota feels the motivation to keep it going in order to reach a new level in moguls skiing.
“I’m excited and I’m going to do a lot of summer training. This year was definitely an eye opener to where I need to be to reach my goals. I have a plan now and I’m going to stick to that,” Cota said.
Also on the podium with Cota, marking his second appearance in the week was U.S. moguls champion Joey Discoe (Telluride, CO) in second, and Dave DiGravio (Farmington, ME) in third.
“I feel great. I just came out here and I got to ski all my runs and put them all down. It’s great being on the podium twice,” Discoe said. “Hopefully next year I get those first World Cup starts. That’s my main goal and I think this will help me.”
With the dual moguls complete, the U.S. freestyle athletes now depart to train for the summer in anticipation of the 2011 season, and particularly the FIS Freestyle World Championships, which will be held at Deer Valley Resort in Utah.
2010 Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships
Squaw Valley, CA – March 28, 2010
1. Jeremy Cota, Steamboat Springs, CO
2. Joey Discoe, Telluride, CO
3. Dave DiGravio, Farmington, ME
4. Zak Watkins, Telluride, CO
5. Bradley Wilson, Park City, UT