Cork-7 boosts Wilson to fifth in World Moguls


SIERRA NEVADA, Spain  – Abundant sunshine and great mogul skiing kicked off the first day, Wednesday, of the 2017 FIS Freestyle Ski & Snowboard World Championships. U.S. athletes ended the first of two moguls events with a fifth-place finish from Brad Wilson of Butte  and a 10th place finish from Keaton McCargo of Telluride, Colorado).

Spring has arrived in Sierra Nevada, bringing with it plenty of sunshine to soften up the Le Visera moguls course. As the bumps went from hard to more forgiving, athletes were able to progress the speed and put down competitive runs. Wilson did just that, posting the second fastest time in the super final and throwing a big back X off the bottom air that was unfortunately a bit too big.“The course was tougher this morning, so I tried to ski more conservatively,” said Wilson. “As the snow got a little softer you could really start to let it go. I competed a cork 7 today, which was a new addition to my run. It went well, and I’m happy with my skiing. Just bummed I went a little too big on the bottom air.”

McCargo, who qualified seventh into the finals rounds, skied strong middle sections throughout the day, but made a mistake on her top air that cost her a trip to the super finals.

“The course was completely different this afternoon,” stated McCargo. “It was more fun and more consistent, making the competition that much harder – any mistake was knocking you out. I thought my turns were great today and I was really happy to do well on my bottom air. I just missed my top air, so looking to improve on that and go bigger and faster tomorrow.”Joining Wilson and McCargo in the final rounds were Tom Rowley of Long Beach, New York,  who skied to a solid ninth-place finish, and Olivia Giaccio of Redding, Connecticut, who landed 15th.

Japan’s Ikuma Horishima made the race for the men’s podium interesting as he bested 2017 World Cup Champion Mikael Kingsbury of Canada in the qualifying round. In the super final, Horishima put down another impressive run, scoring an 88.54. Kingsbury was the final competitor and had the chance to take the win, but he dragged his hands off the bottom air, giving Horishima the gold. France’s Benjamin Cavet was second and Kingsbury landed third. On the women’s side, it was no surprise to see Australia’s Britt Cox at the top of the podium. France’s Perinne Laffont was second and Canada’s Justine Dufour-Lapointe third.

“Our team skied well today,” Wilson said. “It’s sweet, because we can really build off each other now and use that as we continue to map out what needs to happen next year for the Olympic season.”