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North American skiers took 11 of 12 podium places at World Cup halfpipe and slopestyle competitions yesterday (March 4) at the VISA U.S. Grand Prix in Mammoth, Calif.

Putting pressure aside, after a crash on his first halfpipe run, U.S. Freeskiing athlete David Wise went huge on his final run and nailed it, scoring a 94.4. The win was the third consecutive victory for Wise and also his third major of the season.

“My whole year this year has been a battle with the pressure and realizing how to overcome it. The reality is you are only under as much pressure as you put on yourself,” said Wise. “I am stoked to be able to come out here and do what I enjoy doing in front of the cameras and people. That’s why we do what we do, I feel very lucky and blessed to be out here.”

Canadian Noah Bowman took second with 92 points followed by Frenchman Benoit Valentin in third with 90 points.

American Torin Yater-Wallace, who finished fifth, landed the first-ever in-competition 1440 double cork.

In the women’s halfpipe competition, American Brita Sigourney placed her own bookend on the freeskiing series with the top finish. She was also the winner of the first event of the season in Copper Mountain, Colo. Canada’s Roz G took second ahead of American Maddie Bowman in third.

“It’s always a relief to land your first run, I’m never that solid on my first run because I’m so jittery, but it’s still a relief,” Sigourney. “So the next run you can work on cleaning up your tricks and that’s exactly what I did, so I couldn’t be happier.”

American Tom Wallisch won the men’s slopestyle contest with a 96.40-point score and in his signature style he stomped all of his tricks and executed them with confidence. His consistent podium placement has elevated him to be the winningest male slopestyle skier in history.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better day today, the course was smooth and the snow was soft, not to mention the park was sweet,” said Wallisch, who collected his fifth podium of this season and fourth first place. “It was an awesome event and I am so happy that the U.S. Grand Prix is here to help us show the world what our sport is about, it sets a good precedence for the next events that we do leading up to Sochi in 2014. I can’t wait!”

Canadian Alex Bellemare finished second with 89.2 points ahead of American Joss Christensen in third place with 87.2 points.

Canadian Kaya Turski won the women’s slopestyle contest with a top score of 93.2 points. American Devin Logan notched her fourth straight podium of this season in second with 87.6 points ahead of fellow American Emilia Wint in third place.

“My season so far has been great and I am extremely excited with how everything is going. I’m just trying to keep it clean and solid and work on some new tricks and Devin and Anna, a lot of girls really, are stepping it up, it’s really cool to come out on top,” said Turski.

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Eric Williams



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