A podium finish and high praise from a freeskiing legend awaited Cassandra Sharpe on Feb. 12 at the second stop of The North Face Park and Pipe Open Series at Northstar, California.
Twenty thousand dollars in prize money was awarded to the top finishers, with James Campbell of Sugarloaf, Maine, and Yuki Tsubota of Whistler Blackcomb taking top honours in the park competition. Topping the podium in the pipe event was Kyle Smaine of Heavenly, California, and Cassandra Sharpe of Comox.
Semifinals and finals for the men’s and women’s pipe competition took place on Sunday in Northstar’s Olympic calibre, 22 foot tall, 510-foot long superpipe, under perfect, sunny, blue sky conditions.
On the women’s side of the pipe competition, Sharpe, a graduate of Highland Secondary, positioned herself on the top of the podium with a run consisting of a smooth right-side flair, the only invert attempted and landed by a female in the event, scoring herself a 77.00. Sharpe is sponsored by Rossignol, Scott and Swany.
Maggie Stout of Blue Mountain, Ontario finished in second place with her very technical spins in both directions and consistent amplitude, scoring herself a 73.00. In third place was Abigale Hansen from Mammoth, CA earning a 69.60.
“I was impressed with the up-coming talent in the women’s field. I look forward to seeing the ladies take their runs to the next level of halfpipe skiing,” said judge and freeskiing legend Skogen Sprang. “Cassandra Sharpe showed she was not afraid to put it all on the line for the competition with her amplitude and inverted airs,” Sprang added.
The 19-year-old Sharpe, who honed her skills on Mount Washington, is in her second year with the BC Freestyle Ski Team. She place first in big air at the 2011 Canada Winter Games. Her goals include competing on the Dew Tour and going to The X Games.