I just won my first World Cup! After battling strep throat all week, I could not be more thrilled to say I got my first podium in the form of a gold medal yesterday at the duals event in Tazawako, Japan. It was a crazy day of competition with a lot of rain and tough snow conditions, but I skied fast, clean and had a ton of fun!
I skied five duals total, so it's safe to say my body is quite sore today, but it was completely worth it. In the grand final, I skied against Britt Cox, the reigning world champion. In the quarter final, I skied against Perrine Laffont, this year's Olympic champion and the number one women's mogul skier in the world. Dualing these legends was an honor. I'm ecstatic I was able to win, but it was incredible just competing against them as they have been my inspirations for several years now. All the competitors pushed themselves beyond their limits yesterday and I owe a huge part of my success to them as they push me every day to become the best I can be.
Aside from home turf, there is nowhere I would rather get my first win than in Japan. The culture here is incredibly welcoming, and they idolize mogul skiing. All the fans are amazing, and my heart goes out to them for standing in the rain all day cheering for every athlete, regardless of their nationality. I love Japan, and I can't wait to come back to this beautiful country next year.
Like going to the Olympics this season, winning this World Cup is another one of my dreams turning into a reality. I can't say thank you enough to my entire support crew (coaches, family, teammates, sponsors, friends), I would not be here without all of you. I feel so humbled by the love I have received in the past few days, but throughout my entire journey as well, and I share this win with all of you! Thank you thank you. Arigato gozaimus!
Moving forward, I am back on the road headed home for one day, and then off to Airolo Switzerland for the next World Cup (also a duals event). I'm feeling healthy now and ready to keep this momentum rolling in the last few contests. Keep an eye out for some video if you're interested to see what dual moguls looks like!