Two Montana natives advanced to the slopestyle skiing finals of the Dew Tour Breckenridge as they try to qualify for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Games.
Missoula’s Darian Stevens, 21, and Whitefish’s Maggie Voisin, 19, will compete 2:15-3 p.m. Saturday in Breckenridge, Colorado, after they made it through Friday’s qualifying round. Stevens was seventh with 79.66 points as she completed a new run for the first time in live competition. Voisin was sixth with 81.33 points.
“I was super stoked to lay down the run that I’ve been practicing all week,” Stevens said. “It’s a really tough course, so I was stoked to land the run, and luckily it gave me a good-enough score to get into finals tomorrow.”
The top eight skiers advanced to the final, where they get three runs instead of two. The scores are reset for the finals, and each competitor’s highest score on Saturday is used for placing. Points are awarded based on difficulty, cleanliness of the run, height of jumps, style and overall impression.
“I’m hoping to clean up my run,” Stevens said. “I’m basically going to keep it the same. I want to make it cleaner and have less little errors, and it should improve my score.”
Competitors have to finish in the top three of a qualifier at least twice to be automatically selected to the team. Dew Tour Breckenridge is the second of five qualifying opportunities.
Voisin won the first qualifier in February; Stevens was fifth. Voisin qualified for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games, but didn’t compete because of an injury.
Team USA can take up to four competitors to the Olympic Games.
A fundraiser for Stevens is planned from 6-9 p.m. Dec. 29 at the MCT Center for the Performing Arts to raise money as she chases her shot at the Olympic Games. Attendees can meet Stevens, take part in a silent auction and see a screening of the ski movie “This is Home.”