David Wise overcame heavy snowfall and even a stumble to clinch the gold medal for the United States in the men’s freestyle skiing halfpipe event today.
Each skier is given two runs down the halfpipe, with only the highest score of the two runs counting as his official score. On one of his runs, Wise fell early on, also earning the judges’ lowest score of the finals, a 3.4.
But on his other run, Wise was able to execute two corkscrews, getting the judges’ highest score of a 92 out of a possible 100 points – which was good enough for the gold.
The halfpipe has been a treacherous fixtures to freestyle skiers at Sochi, having injured both New Zealand’s Byron Wells and Britain’s Rowan Cheshire earlier this week. Several of the skiers at today’s event failed to make it down the halfpipe unscathed, including Canada’s Justin Dorey, who was ranked #1 going in.
Canada’s Mike Riddle took silver and France’s Kevin Rolland took bronze.