Caldwell Podiums in World Cup Opener
SECRET GARDEN, China (Dec. 16, 2017) – World Champion Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.) led four U.S. aerialists into finals on day one of competition at Secret Garden Resort, finishing third and landing one of two podium spots needed to objectively qualify for the 2018 Olympic team.
Caldwell struggled to put down clean landings throughout Saturday’s competition, but her high degree of difficulty jumps help propel her to her first podium of the season. She performed a triple twisting triple flip, a full-full-full, in the super final, scoring a 68.04. Belarus’ Hanna Huskova took the win followed by China’s Mengtao Xu in second. Kiley McKinnon (Madison, Conn.) also advanced to finals for the U.S., but was unable to land cleanly on her double twisting double, a full-full, and finished 12th.
World Champion Jon Lillis (Rochester, N.Y.) was the top U.S. men’s finisher in sixth. China’s Zongyang Jia took the win with a quadruple twisting triple flip, a full-double full-full, and a score of 127.88. Belarus’ Maxim Gustik was second and Canada’s Louis Irving third. Mac Bohonnon (Madison, Conn.) just missed making the super final, landing in seventh.
Competition continues on Sunday, Dec. 17 in the aerials team event, where the individual qualification results will count as a World Cup finish.