Jennifer Hudak moves from World Cup to U.S. Skier Halfpipe Podium

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March 23, 2006

Killington, VT - (News Release) - After capturing her first World Cup podium just one week ago, Jennifer Hudak (Park City, UT) won the inaugural U.S. Freestyle Championships title in skier halfpipe Thursday at Killington Resort to open the 2006 Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships. Canadian Scott Hibbert stuck a back flip to finish his run and win the men's title.

"I grew up skiing at Okemo (about 40 minutes from Killington), said Hudak, 19, "and they always had a great pipe that I would go into just for fun. I'd try to go crazy big and get a little out of control. But I was a moguls skier initially and I did that until about four years ago.

All it took to hook Hudak on halfpipe was a formal stage on which to compete. She got her chance in 2003 when she won the World Junior Championships at Marble Mountain in Newfoundland, Canada. Since then she has competed on the World Cup and NorAm circuits (she won a NorAm HP at Alpine Meadows last February) as well as notable domestic competitions such as the X Games.

For her winning run, Hudak took five hits starting with back-to-back mute grabs, a critical grab, a tail grab and finishing with a 540 mute grab. She said her skiing has been more consistent this season, leading to more confident runs like her performance Thursday.

Hibbert said winning the U.S. championship title was the highlight of his season and he hopes to continue his success at the upcoming Vermont Open (at Stratton Mtn.) this weekend. Hibbert kicked off his run with a 540 safety and a 540 mute grab, followed by a corked 900 reverse mute, a big straight air (also a mute grab) and a laid-out back flip.

The Sprint U.S. Freestyle Championships continue Friday with moguls competition.

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Results

SPRINT U.S. FREESTYLE CHAMPIONSHIPS, KILLINGTON, VT
MARCH 23, 2006
SKIER HALFPIPE

MEN

1. Scott Hibbert, Canada, 86.0

2. David Wise, Reno, Nev., 83.6

3. Tony Seibert, Edwards, Colo., 75.2

4. Troy Cook, Truckee, Calif., 72.6

5. Noah Labow, Jeffersonville, Vt., 70.4

6. Tyler Homen, Roseville, Calif., 69.4

WOMEN

1. Jennifer Hudak, Park City, Utah, 65.8

2. Sophia Schwartz, Ketchum, Id., 63.4

3. Kim Sharp, Park City, Utah, 56.4

4. Allison Lee, Manchester, Conn., 56.2

5. Calli DeGrace, Plymouth, N.H., 53.6

6. Elizabeth Maney, Hartland, Vt., 40.6

For complete results:http://www.fis-ski.com/uk/604/1228.html?event_id=18570&cal_suchsector=FS