Riccomini wins Revolution Tour freeski silver in Copper Mountain halfpipe
Rev Tour halfpipe season title propels Riccomini to likely US Rookie Team slot in all three disciplines
Team Summit skier Jenna Riccomini bounced back from a difficult slopestyle final Tuesday, March 2, to take silver at Wednesday’s Revolution Tour halfpipe competition at Copper Mountain Resort.
Riccomini earned the silver-medal score of 85.00 — just 0.25 points behind gold medalist Riley Jacobs — despite a broken left thumb. The finish earned her the overall Revolution Tour women’s halfpipe freeski tour championship after a bronze in halfpipe at a tour stop in Aspen last week.
A broken hand might not seem like a huge deal, but when balancing in the halfpipe, Riccomini has grown fond of using ski poles to keep her balance. So Riccomini decided to have U.S. Rookie Team coach Ryan Wyble duct tape her Zipline poles to her hand at the top of the halfpipe before dropping in. The idea was recommended to Riccomini by a Team Summit mogul skier teammate.
“And the irony is, for years, Jenna didn’t want to ski with poles,” Team Summit coach Dean Spirito said. “A lot of us tried to convince her it would help with her skiing technique — that forward pressure when skiing through features in the terrain park. It wasn’t until last year she became attached to them and felt uncomfortable skiing without them.”
Spirito said even if the duct-taped poles helped a bit, it was Riccomini’s competitive approach and soaring skills in the Woodward Copper 22-foot superpipe that helped her finish runner-up. Riccomini said her alley-oop — spinning opposite direction of travel — with a mute grab 6 feet above the pipe to start her run put her in a great position before landing the remaining tricks in her run, including a flare — a backflip with a 180-degree rotation.
“Like (Team Summit Park & Pipe Director) Teddy Goggin says, ’If that first hit is big, it will carry through to all the rest,’” Riccomini said.
Though nothing is official, Riccomini’s Rev Tour win and Rev Tour full-season halfpipe title put her in position to be named to the U.S. Rookie Team in halfpipe after she was named to the slopestyle and big air team after last season.
Goggin has dubbed Riccomini a “triple-threat” in freeskiing, evidenced by her medals in all three disciplines — halfpipe, big air and slopestyle — between last week and this week’s Rev Tour stops in Aspen and Copper.
“She’s gone from a young girl into a really fierce woman,” Goggin said. “When she stands in the start gate, people are watching, and people are nervous. It’s a great place to be as a competitor. She’s super fierce.”
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.
Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.