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U.S. Sweeps Gold at FIS World Snowboard Halfpipe Championships: Utah’s Ricky Bower and Vermont Rider Kim Stacey Sweep Titles

BERCHTESGADEN, Germany, Jan. 16 — Unheralded Ricky Bower (Park City, Utah) and a hard-charging Kim Stacey (Stratton Mountain, VT) both became World Champions Saturday at the FIS World Snowboard Championships in Berchtesgaden winning gold in the halfpipe. The event will be televised on the Outdoor Life Network Jan. 30 at 1:00 p.m. EST.

Bower, who was second in a big air exhibition a week earlier at the Chevy S-10 U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix in Copper Mountain, Colo., opted to change his entire halfpipe routine for the event and it paid off. Stacey, like Bower, used consistency through qualifying the three finals runs to clinch the title.

Stacey qualified in second behind French rider Doriane Vidal in morning trials. In the finals, Vidal put down the run to beat with a 41.0 in the first run, while Stacey scored a 37.5. In the final run, Stacey took a pathway of perfection, scoring 41.9 to overtake the French rider for the gold in the best of two runs format. Anna Hellman of Sweden was third, while American Lynn Ott (Bend, OR) finished 15th.

“I didn’t really change anything too much this week,” said the 18-year old Stacey. “I just finally put it together and stuck it when it counted.

“I did about three or four straight airs and then a 540. I usually do a seven (720) at the bottom but I did two straight airs because I knew I could stick it — I wanted to do something I knew I could pull off,” she said.