U.S. FREESKING OPEN: Pipe finals today at Copper Mountain | SummitDaily.com

U.S. FREESKING OPEN: Pipe finals today at Copper Mountain

summit daily news
Summit County, Co Colorado

With the wind swirling snow across the superpipe, some local skiers made their presence felt on the first day of competition at the U.S. Freeskiing Open at Copper Mountain, Friday.

Breckenridge skier Geoff Straight topped the ranks in the second men’s heat of the day, earning a trip to today’s semifinals. After struggling on his opening run, Straight netted a score of 78.8 to win the heat by more than three points.

Fellow Breck skier Scott Hibbert, along with Keystone’s Christion Allen, advanced out of Heat 1. Hibbert used his second-run score of 77.8 to finish third in the preliminary round, while Allen finished sixth, taking the last advancing spot.

All in all, 12 skiers ” six from each heat ” made it through to Friday’s competition, all but two coming from the United States.

Matt Duhamel of Squaw Valley, Utah, won the first heat with the highest score of the day at 85.4, and Tyler Peterson finished second at 80.4.

Other skiers to advance include Canadian Luke Kary, Gus Kenworthy, Noah Bowman, Derek Spong, Sean Collin and Cristhian Ravelo.

With many of the sport’s top names skipping this year’s U.S. Open ” which, unlike in past years, doesn’t include slopestyle or big air contests ” the door is left wide open for lesser known riders to stake their claim in the world’s longest running freeskiing competition.

Today’s action consists of men’s and women’s semifinals and finals. The women’s semifinal is the first to start at 10:30 a.m., when Vail’s Claudia Bouvier will start her quest to improve off last year’s third-place finish.

This years addition of the U.S. Open is presented by Copper’s Camp Woodward, which officially opens its new facility this weekend. Copper is hosting a Woodward at Copper Launch Party, Saturday. On Sunday, the Junior Superpipe Jam will be held, beginning at 10 a.m.

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