Sildaru qualifies for half-pipe finals on 20th birthday

Kelly Sildaru in Beijing.
Kelly Sildaru in Beijing. Source: Karli Saul/EOK

Skier Kelly Sildaru qualified in third place for Friday's Women's Freeski Halfpipe finals at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

Sildaru booked her place on her 20th birthday no less, and two days after winning bronze in the slopestyle.

Sildaru only needed to make on pass to qualify, picking up 87.5 points and placing her third behind local hero Eileen Gu (95.5) and Rachael Karker (Canada, 89.5).

20 skiers will compete on Friday, with Sildaru ninth up in the starting lineup.

Gu, Friday's favorite, won gold in the Big Air and silver in the Slopestyle – the event Sildaru bagged her bronze in.

Sildaru ended Estonia's 12-year Winter Olympics medals drought with her bronze on Tuesday and, sould she win a second medal, she will be only the third Estonian to pick up more than one medal at the same winter games.

Until Tuesday, cross-country skier and present-day Reform Party MP Kristina Šmigun-Vähi was the last Estonian athlete to win a Winter Olympics medal when she took silver in the 10km.

Sildaru was one of Estonia's two flag-bearers at the Bejing olympics opening ceremony. She is a six-time X-Games gold medalist and also won gold at the Youth Winter Olympics in Lausanne, Switzerland, in 2020.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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