KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia — All three American entrants in freestyle skiing’s slopestyle event advanced to the final Tuesday, led by 20-year-old Vermonter Devin Logan, who placed fifth during two morning runs at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park.
Logan, 16-year-old Julia Krass and Keri Herman all placed in the top 12, putting them in Tuesday afternoon’s final. Canada’s Dara Howell posted the top score of 88.80, beating countrywoman Kim Lamarre.
The most significant development from the morning, though, is who didn’t advance. Canada’s Kaya Turski, who had won the three biggest competitions leading into the sport’s Olympic debut – the 2013 world championship, the X Games Europe and the X Games – twice crashed on a very difficult course, separating her shoulder on her first run. She finished 19th and won’t ski in the final.
The emotion of the sport’s debut, though, was apparent at a vibrant venue under cloudy skies.
“I don’t usually get nervous,” said Herman, a former hockey player from Minnesota. “And I’m pretty sure I was hit with every single possible emotion that you could ever have at the top. What is going on? I don’t know how to handle that. I’m scared, sad, excited – ah, crazy, all at the same time.”
The qualification round consisted of two runs, with an athlete’s best score used to determine the results. Logan was fifth with 80.40, Krass eighth at 78.40 and Herman 11th at 72.40.
“Can’t wait for finals,” Logan said. “Hopefully step it up a little bit more, pull out my bigger tricks.”
Finals, which consist of two runs, are scheduled for 1 p.m. local time (4 a.m. EST).