A couple of favorites struggled, and American Ty Walker did the bare minimum to keep going. But Jamie Anderson lived up to her favorite status.
Date: 6- Feb
Event: Women’s slopestyle qualifing, second heat
How U.S. fared: Gold medal favorite Jamie Anderson was smooth as silk in the air and on all her landings in her first run, posting a massive 93.50. With her qualification safe, she opted not to take her second run.
Ty Walker was the first rider, but she bypassed every ramp. Her score: 1.00. (One judge gave her a 2.) Then she skipped her second run. Why? She’s hurt, and all she had to do to make the semifinals was make it down the slope once. Strategically, nothing wrong with it — just very strange to watch.
The stunner was Karly Shorr. The inexperienced 19-year-old slipped on her first run. On her second, needing to beat 77.75 to qualify for the final, she nailed it — 84.75.
Jessika Jenson slipped a little on each run.
What happened: Another surprise was Anna Gasser, a solid fifth in the X Games but not expected to post anything like the 95.50 she laid down on her second run.
Sarko Pancochova (Czech Republic), one of the favorites, had a so-so first run but still stood fourth with a 77.75. She didn’t try to improve on the second run, doing a few grabs but no twists or flips. Then she watched Shorr take away her direct qualification spot. Oops.
Norway’s Silje Norendal, first in the current World Snowboard Tour rankings, didn’t post a clean run and will need to go through the semifinals.
The direct qualifiers: Gasser, Anderson, Switzerland’s Elena Koenz, Shorr.
Quote: “It definitely wasn’t how I imagined my Olympic run, my first run in the Olympics, to be. But you just gotta play the cards in your hand and put myself in the best position for Sunday.” – Ty Walker