Rhoads Looks Ahead After Opening Jump
FALUN, Sweden (Feb. 21, 2015) - USA ski jumper Will Rhoads (Park City, UT) is looking forward to the remaining schedule at World Championships after being bumped from Saturday's HS100-meter ski jumping final on a suit violation. Rhoads had earned a spot in the finals with a strong qualification round on Friday where he finished 30th. Norway's Rune Velta gook gold over Germany's Severin Freund with Austrian Stefan Kraft winning bronze.
After his first jump in Saturday's competition where he went 83.5 meters, Rhoads was randomly selected for suit testing. Jumping suits must conform to certain size standards based on body composition of the athlete. His suit was found to be 2 cm too large in his mid-section and he was disqualified.
According to USA Ski Jumping Coach Bine Norcic, the suit had been recently sized with him but that Rhoads had lost a bit of weight since coming to Falun. “I take responsibility,” said Norcic. “He was a little sick and lost 1-1/2 kilos and that was enough.”
Rhoads had made the team based on strong Continental Cup results and is making his first appearance at the sport’s top level.
“I’m happy for him,” added Norcic. “This is the first season he’s been at this level. He’ll take a lot of experience from that. He’ll soar even more on the big hill because he’s a natural flier.”
Rhoads will start in Sunday’s mixed gender team event along with men’s teammate Nick Alexander, who missed qualifying by a tenth of a point Friday. He will also be in next weekend’s big hill event.