K.C. Oakley (left), Jaelin Kauf and Tess Johnson celebrate their dual moguls podiums at the 2017 U.S. Freestyle Championships. (U.S. Ski Team/Sarah Brunson)
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, CO (April 1, 2017) – Mogul skiers from around the country dualed it out on the Voodoo mogul course to close out the 2017 U.S. Freestyle Championships. Jaelin Kauf (Alta, WY) and Hunter Bailey (Vail, CO) ended their seasons as dual moguls national champions.
After winning Friday’s moguls competition, Bailey was in fine form to go for another win in duals. Spring conditions made the course soft and allowed the skiers to really push the speed. Bailey battled through some tough duals before meeting U.S. Ski Team teammate Emerson Smith in the big final. They were neck and neck down the entire course, with Bailey taking the win 18 to 17.
“It feels great to bring home both titles,” said Bailey. “It was super fun today. That dual with Emerson was probably the best dual I’ve ever won. It was a good day.”
Men's dual moguls podium (l to r): Emerson Smith, Hunter Bailey and Kalman Heims. (U.S. Ski Team/Sarah Brunson)
It was a hometown win for Kauf, who skied out of the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club prior to making the U.S. Ski Team. She has done well in duals all year, claiming two World Cup podiums - including a win - and a bronze medal at the 2017 FIS Freestyle World Championships. Teammate K.C. Oakley (Piedmont, CA) and Kauf also had a very close dual in the big final, but Kauf prevailed to capture yet another duals win and her first-career national title.
“It’s awesome to win here in Steamboat,” said Kauf. “I love having my family, friends and a bunch of people here. It’s really cool to share this with them and be here at home. I’m happy to end the year on a good note with two podiums here, and it definitely boost my confidence going into next year as well.”
Rounding out the podiums were Tess Johnson (Vail, CO) in third for the women and Killington Mountain School’s Kalman Heims in third for the men.
Jaelin Kauf and Hunter Bailey won the dual moguls national titles at the 2017 U.S. Freestyle Championships.
It was Bailey’s second win and Kauf’s second podium of the week.
It was Kauf’s first-career national title.
K.C. Oakley and Tess Johnson were second and third for the women.
Emerson Smith and Kalman Heims were second and third for the men.