SIERRA NEVADA – The choice of an optional sport at a Universiade is always at the discretion of the Organising Committee (but subject to the approval of the Executive Committee of FISU). Various reasons can push an Organising Committee to choose a certain discipline, i.e. popularity of the sport in the host country, medal chance, presence of the required infrastructure, etc.
First Gold Medal for France thanks to Marine Tripier Mondacin
For this 27th Winter Universiade held in Granada (and Sierra Nevada), the Organising Committee has chosen the freestyle skiing and it is not by chance. Indeed, the Sierra Nevada will host the FIS World Championships freestyle skiing and snowboarding in March 2017.
The Sierra Nevada ski resort which host the Universiade freestyle skiing, snowboarding and downhill skiing events, has indeed dedicated part of its domain to these disciplines. This is a deliberate choice and it attracts a huge audience of young thrill-seekers. The resort already has experience in organizing such events. Several rounds of the FIS World Cup took place here, as well as the Junior World Championships and this in both disciplines: snowboarding and freestyle skiing.
Today, the Universiade offers during ten days 4 freestyle skiing events and 4 snowboard events simultaneously, genuine world championship style in a way. This is an excellent opportunity for the staff of the ski resort to prepare for the 2017 event and no doubt the debriefing after the Universiade will be very informative.
The Men’s podium of this first ski freestyle half pipe event
Today, 11 February, the Universiade hosted for the first time its half pipe programme for skiers. A spectacular event that saw France win its first gold medal in the women’s competition with the overwhelming dominance of Marine Tripier Mondacin.
In the men’s competition, the American John Leonard emerged as a champion after his two magnificent runs during which he excelled his figures rapidly one after the other reaching an impressive height in the half pipe.
Text & Photos: Yvan Dufour, Editor-in-Chief
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