Olympic gold medal winner Hannah Kearny fought her way through four rounds of dual moguls competitions to take the top spot for the 14th consecutive time in Saturday’s Visa Freestyle International held at Deer Valley Resort. Kearny threw down a jump package that included a layout and a heli.
Todd Schirman, Freestyle Program Director spoke to Kearny’s winning streak, “For Hannah to take 14 wins in a row is just outstanding. The depth is here, the leadership is here. Kearney is on fire!”
Teammate Heather McPhie followed suit to finish in third place, earning her second podium of the week. McPhie tossed out a back cross on the top and her signature D-spin on the bottom.
McPhie was elated by the day’s competiiton,”I feel like I’m finally skiing with that fire that I had that Olympic year. Last year I was still working on my new tricks and this year throwing that D-spin in every event, even duals, has been so exciting. This is my third podium ever with my D-spin so I’m so stoked.”
The U.S. women took five of the top eight places in the day’s event. Kearney, McPhie, Eliza Outtrim, K.C. Oakley and Mikaela Matthews. There was definitely some friendly fire going down on the course today with McPhie and Kearny pushing each other through a healthy rivalry that contributed heavily to their podium-level performances.
Kearny said, “I think that in duals, you often assume that whoever crossed the line first took it, but turns are still 50 percent. She (Heather McPhie) has been pushing me all year; we’ve been so tight in times. I pushed myself but still stayed clean and that’s what won it for me tonight.”
McPhie corroborates, “I really want to beat Hannah, so I like every experience I have to dual her and just keep getting better and faster against her. I’m a happy camper. It was a really good time out there tonight.”
“The friendly fire of two teammates racing against each other is always tough, but it’s about when the friendly fire happens – it pushes our athletes”, said Schirman.
On the men’s side, Russian Sergey Volkov took first place in a huge upset for Canada’s Mikael Kingsbury who saw his would-be record breaking seventh win downgraded to a second place finish. The record was previously held by the U.S. Ski Team’s Jeremy Bloom — so there no love-loss over the conclusion of Kingsbury’s winning streak. American Jeremy Cota barely missed the podium with a fourth place finish.