Mikael Kingsbury continued his domination on the moguls course, while the freeskiers showed just how much halfpipe and slopestyle have progressed over the last four years. Here’s a look back at some of the top moments from the PyeongChang Games in freestyle skiing.
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Mikael Kingsbury finally adds Olympic gold to his collection
Canadian mogul skier Mikael Kingsbury came to PyeongChang with a record 48 World Cup victories, six straight World Cup titles and two world championships gold medals. But Olympic gold was still the one thing missing from his résumé.
Kingsbury had finished second behind countryman Alex Bilodeau at the last Olympics, but this time, he emerged with the gold medal and showed why he just might be the most dominant athlete in winter sports right now.
Jon Lillis honors his brother Mikey
U.S. skier Jon Lillis and his two younger brothers, Chris and Mikey, dreamed of going to the Olympics together as aerialists. But last October, Mikey unexpectedly died in his sleep at the age of 19.
Lillis, the reigning world champion in men’s aerials, made it to the Olympics and while there, honored his brother’s memory. During the Opening Ceremony, he walked into the stadium while wearing a special pendant that contained some of Mikey’s ashes. He then competed while wearing Mikey’s old ski suit, making it into the second round of the finals and finishing in eighth place.
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A pair of American teenagers became breakout stars, and a 22-year-old from the Czech Republic proved to be one of the most versatile athletes in PyeongChang. Here’s a look back at some of the top moments from Olympic snowboarding this year.
Red Gerard becomes a star
After an unexpected gold medal in men’s slopestyle, Red Gerard became a cult legend. His run itself was great — he took creative lines throughout the course and used features that other riders were ignoring — but then the 17-year-old really became a breakout star thanks to his candid interviews.
“Hangry” Chloe Kim fulfills her destiny
Chloe Kim has been dominating women’s halfpipe for several years now, but she finally got to bring her talents to the Olympic stage. Viewers fell in love with her story, as well as her mid-competition tweets about ice cream and being “hangry.”
And during the contest, Kim gave everyone what they wanted on her victory lap — the back-to-back 1080s. The extremely difficult sequence of tricks has still never been done by any other woman, and even Kim has used it very sparingly over the last two years. But she landed it on her third run to put the exclamation point on her gold-medal performance.
Watch all of the best snowboarding highlights from PyeongChang by clicking here
There was no Olympic medal this time around, but Gus Kenworthy won’t be leaving PyeongChang empty-handed.
With his competitions complete, Kenworthy and his boyfriend Matt Wilkas visited the site of a Korean dog meat farm which is currently in the process of being closed down. In a social media post, Kenworthy called it a “heart-wrenching” experience.
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Kenworthy said that all 90 dogs that were on the farm are being taken to the U.S. and Canada for adoption, but one of those dogs — which he named “Beemo” — will be coming home to live with him.
In 2014, Kenworthy made headlines for his role in helping to bring several stray dogs from Sochi back to the States.
This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visit to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea. Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don't personally agree with it, I do agree that it's not my place to impose western ideals on the people here. The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty. I was told that the dogs on this particular farm were kept in "good conditions" by comparison to other farms. The dogs here are malnourished and physically abused, crammed into tiny wire-floored pens, and exposed to the freezing winter elements and scorching summer conditions. When it comes time to put one down it is done so in front of the other dogs by means of electrocution sometimes taking up to 20 agonizing minutes. Despite the beliefs of the Korean public at large, these dogs are no different from the ones we call pets back home. Some of them were even pets at one time and were stolen or found and sold into the dog meat trade. Luckily, this particular farm (thanks to the hard work of the Humane Society International and the cooperation of a farmer who's seen the error of his ways) is being permanently shut down and all 90 of the dogs here will be brought to the US and Canada where they'll find their fur-ever homes. I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks. I cannot wait to give her the best life possible! There are still millions of dogs here in need of help though (like the Great Pyrenees in the 2nd pic who was truly the sweetest dog ever). I'm hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the US where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes! Go to @hsiglobal's page to see how you can help. #dogsarefriendsnotfood #adoptdontshop â¤ï¸ðŸ¶