FROM THE FRONT PAGE

Central Otago Mirror - - WANAKA NEWS -

snow­board­ing’s top com­peti­tor Shaun White, of the United States, from com­pet­ing af­ter he was con­cerned about in­jur­ing him­self and jeop­ar­dis­ing his chances in other events. How­ever, the course was ex­pected to have Jossi Wells in his prime. Wells, who is one of New Zealand’s best chances of climb­ing the podium in the slopestyle freeski event, made an im­me­di­ate im­pact at the Rosa Khutor course dur­ing the New Zealand snow­board and freeski ath­lete’s first train­ing ses­sion, ac­cord­ing to New Zealand park and pipe team head coach Tom Will­mott. ‘‘Jossi was re­ally happy with the big size of the jumps - it means plenty of air time which means time to do some more tech­ni­cal ma­noeu­vres,’’ Will­mott said. ‘‘He likes things big and he’s also very cre­ative on the rails so there’s lots and lots of op­tions and he’s work­ing his way through the dif­fer­ent fea­tures and work­ing out some­thing that’s go­ing to stand out from the crowd, so that’s ex­cit­ing to watch.’’ The course forced Wanaka rider Christy Prior to with­draw from the women’s event af­ter sus­tain­ing con­cus­sion in a crash on the course dur­ing prac­tice. The crash hap­pened when she was per­form­ing a back­side 360 and didn’t land the jump cleanly. The re­main­ing Kiwi board­ers, Shelly Gotlieb, Re­becca ‘‘Possu’’ Torr and Stefi Lux­ton, then failed to fin­ish in the top four in the semi­fi­nal, miss­ing out on a spot in the fi­nal. Gotlieb was the best placed Kiwi, fin­ish­ing sev­enth in the semi­fi­nal with a best run of 63.25. Lux­ton fin­ished eighth with a best run of 60.25, and Torr tenth with a top run of 32.50 Those who want to catch the New Zealand team in ac­tion can do so at the Lake Bar in Wanaka where an Olympic hub has been set up and the games will be screened live. ◗ Page 5: Wanaka man­power in­volved in build­ing Olympic half­pipe.

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