Golden girls Torah Bright, Kelly Clark, Hannah Teter prep for showdown in halfpipe final
“Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi,” shouted Torah Bright with pride to her fans in the crowd that triggered the native call.
The Australian Bright is the defending gold medalist in the women’s snowboard halfpipe event, and following her showing in the second heat of the qualification round, she earned a spot to move directly to the final.
“It’s time to rest, for sure. For me, it’s my own game,” said Bright with regard to how she will spend the short window of time before the final. Bright is not one to watch any event, semifinal or final, with the idea of reacting to how her competitors are riding. “I do what I want to do and I’m going to go do it regardless of what anyone else pulls out.”
Determined not to allude as to exactly what, Bright assured she has plans to switch things up in the final. “There will be a few changes. I wont spoil anything, you’ll have to wait for the surprise,” laughed Bright with a look of confidence.
Bright made mention of a few inconsistencies that still remain with the halfpipe which has become a bit of a theme throughout these games.
“I’ve just noticed the vert on the walls, you just never know. On my air to fakie I landed quite low and then bobbled too far up the line. You really can’t have too many errors in here.”
When asked about her level of confidence as the final approaches and her ability to defend her gold, Bright answered in a true carefree snowboarding fashion, saying, “I’m just going to do my best. That’s all I do every day. [Winning a gold] would be beautiful, though. My country would love it.”
Torah Bright competes in the qualifying round. (Photo: Getty Images)
Teter was oozing with confidence as he danced her way down the mixed zone line and taking on any and all questions sent her way.
When asked about her thoughts on the direct pass to the final she responded, “I’m just going to chill, stretch, eat snacks, watch semifinals, do my visualization and get ready for the big show!”
Teter tooted the horn of her other teammate Kaitlyn Farrington who she felt was deserving of a top three score in the qualification round, as well.
“She’ll definitely be in [the final], she should be in already! She has really good style, good amplitude and I’m sure she will qualify first out of the semifinal!”
Teter too said the quality of the halfpipe had significantly improved over the past few days saying, “It felt so much better! It felt amazing right now and they are going to slip it and rake it for finals. It’s going to be really good,” said Teter.
The first golden girl of these three, Clark had the highest score between the two qualification heats and is loving the current conditions of the pipe.
Concurring with the Bright and Teter, Clark said, “The pipe is riding the best it’s ridden yet.”
Clark may have been the first of these three women to win a gold but has maintained her competitive edge ever since her initial win. Clark carries the title of the one to beat in about any halfpipe competition often due to her master of the 1080, which she landed with a solid grab during qualification.
There have been many conversations around the halfpipe regarding whether or not Clark will release two 1080s in her run, something that everyone has heard she has been working on.
However, Clark is a very smart snowboarder and knows she needs a solid run before taking risks. When asked what it will take to see her unleash two 1080s at the Olympics she replied, “It would take a good first run. I definitely want to put down my best run in finals, then I would have the opportunity to experiment.”
Fingers crossed she nails it on her first run so she can add to the snowboard history book by becoming the first woman to land two 1080s in a single run.
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