Summit’s Walczyk finishes in 16th place in men’s moguls Olympic final
Park City’s Page finishes in 5th place
After a second round of qualifying in the men’s freestyle ski moguls at the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, the first finals round Saturday, Feb. 5, consisted of three Americans as Park City native Nick Page was able to improve his placement when he finished in third in the second round of qualifying.
Page joined other Park City resident Cole McDonald and Breckenridge resident Dylan Walczyk in the finals.
McDonald was the first American to take to the course in the first round of finals, which consisted of 20 skiers and was narrowed to 12 for the second round and six for the final medal round.
In finals round No. 1, McDonald was not able to improve his score from qualifying Thursday, Feb. 3, when he scored 76.27. McDonald scored 75.78 on Saturday, which placed him in 14th, and he did not advance.
Walczyk was the second American to take to the moguls course in Genting Snow Park in Beijing, China, after finishing in the last automatic qualifying spot in the first round of qualifiers Thursday.
“Really happy with the way my first run went,” Walczyk wrote in a text after his finals qualifying run. “I had been struggling in training and finally got a clean run together. Going straight through to finals takes a bit of pressure off and allows me to focus on my finals run and performance.”
Walczyk’s finals run looked clean with smooth turns, and the color commentators on the broadcast mentioned that he had increased the difficulty of his jumps on his second run of the competition, but it was not enough to improve his score.
Walczyk originally was positioned in ninth place but was bumped out of the top 12 by the heavy hitters in the latter half of the field, and he finished in 16th place in his Olympic debut.
Page rolled with the momentum he gained from sneaking into the finals after the second round of qualifiers, and he secured his spot in the second round of finals by finishing in 10th with a score of 76.80.
As the sole American in the field, Page continued to perform well. In the second round of finals, he executed on a cork 1080 with a good display of speed through the moguls in order to score 76.92 and finish in the sixth qualifying spot for the final medal round.
The commentators thought Page had his best run of the competition on his final run as he skied clean through the moguls with no breaks and finished with speed after landing a huge jump. Page scored 78.90 and was forced to wait out the rest of the six-man field to see where he would finish with medal favorites Mikaël Kingsbury of Canada and Walter Wallberg of Sweden still left to go.
Wallberg topped the competition with an 83.23 as he defeated reigning Olympic gold medalist Kingsbury, who finished in second. Ikuma Horishima of Japan finished in the bronze position while Page hung on for a fifth-place finish in his first Olympics.
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