Kelly Clark wins again
March 3, 2015
If what Kelly Clark did in the halfpipe wasn’t so consistently amazing, the results would be boring. To paraphrase a DJ Khaled song — all she does is win, win, win, no matter what.
Clark earned another victory to add to her long list of accomplishments on Sunday afternoon in the women’s snowboard halfpipe competition at the U.S. Grand Prix at Park City Mountain Resort.
In fact, two of Clark’s three runs in the finals would have been good enough for first place. Her best score of 94.50 was enough to give her a comfortable win over second-place finisher Arielle Gold, who scored an 88.75.
Clark has had her fair share of big moments in Park City, the biggest of which was her 2002 Olympic gold medal.
"I heard them announcing that 13 years ago was the Salt Lake Olympics," she said. "I have great memories of this place and it has a lot of big moments in my career — from being named to the 2010 [Olympic] team, to the Olympics in ’02. I’m kind of in awe when I step back and look at it that I’m still able to do well in this sport and love this sport."
Clark got a bit of a scare in practice, which didn’t go according to plan.
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"I took a pretty hard slam in practice and got pretty rattled," she said. "So to come back and land my first run after that is a pretty huge achievement. Not only to put a run down, but to be happy with it, was what I wanted."
She’ll look to build off her success in Park City heading into this weekend’s competition in Colorado.
"This week for me is a nice tune up for the U.S. Open next week and I was able to try a new run I’ve never done in a competition before," she said. "For me, it was a stepping stone. Not only was I proud of overcoming a slam in practice, but to come back and put a good run down for the competition and then build on my snowboarding, it couldn’t have gone better."
In the men’s competition, Yiwei Zhang of China had an outstanding final run, scoring a 98.00 out of a possible 100 to clinch a victory over Taylor Gold, who finished second with a 94.75.
"It’s awesome to get second here," Gold said. "Yiwei totally deserved [the win]. He did one of the biggest runs I’ve ever seen. At the top, I was like, ‘I’m going to do everything I can do.’ I wasn’t holding anything back."
Australian Kent Callister took third with a score of 88.50.
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