Wednesday kicked off qualifying rounds for all Sprint U.S. Grand Prix events in Park City, UT, including the Visa U.S. Grand Prix ski halfpipe.
The top six women of 19 qualified for the pipe finals, while—in two heats—10 men qualified from a field of 36. Eight women and 15 men competed for the Americans, against a stacked international field.
Even after accidently showing up late to practice at Park City Mountain Resort, recent X Games gold medalist winner Maddie Bowman (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) won Wednesday’s halfpipe qualifiers with a solid run. Devin Logan (West Dover, VT), who was second at December’s Grand Prix at Copper Mountain, grabbed the sixth qualifying spot.
“Qualifiers were great! The pipe is so great and it’s great to be at home,” said Bowman, who lives in Salt Lake City, just 30 minutes away from Park City. “I know this pipe and this mountain. It’s really cool.”
There were many bumps and bruises during the men’s qualifiers today, including toboggan rides for two foreign athletes on the steep halfpipe. The Americans grabbed five out of the 10 spots. David Wise (Reno, NV) and Torin Yater-Wallace (Basalt, CO) both qualified first in their heats, with Alex Ferreira (Aspen, CO), Gus Kenworthy (Telluride, CO) and Kyle Smaine (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) taking spots, as well.
“Park City is kind of like a second home for me,” said Wise after his qualifying run. “I’ve grown up skiing here. It’s not too long a trip from Tahoe.”
The ski pipe finals take place Saturday at 12:00 p.m. MST. It will stream live on NBC Live Extra at 2:00 p.m. EST, and will air on NBCSN at 2:30 p.m. EST.