In what's been a dominant season so far, Cassie Sharpe led at the Dew Tour from start to finish.The Whistler-based skier, by way of Comox, earned the superpipe title in Breckenridge, Colo. on Dec. 15, scoring a 93.66 to best France's Marie Martinod, who put up an even 92.00, and American Maddie Bowman, who scored a 90.33 to finish well ahead of the rest of the pack.
"It feels super good. It's such a big boost of confidence going into the new year, to the rest of the competitions," she said. "Getting those Olympic points means the world. For everyone in our sport, that's the big goal."
In the finals, Sharpe was skiing with bushels of confidence, pulling off a high-scoring run in her first attempt while knowing she could boost that number a few points in her next try.
"I knew that after I landed my first run and I got an 88 that I definitely had missed some grabs and I missed some amplitude on my switch skiing. I was happy to put a run down, but I knew I could do better than my first run. When I came down for my second and I landed it, I knew that I was going to top my own score, and I was lucky enough that it put me into the top spot," she said.
Though she's up to two wins at major events this season after capturing the season-opening FIS World Cup event in Cardrona, New Zealand, Sharpe was cautiously optimistic about her standing for the upcoming Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea.
"It's hard to speculate because there are so many athletes going for it with Freestyle Canada," she said. "I definitely feel really good going into the new year leading up to it."
At any rate, Sharpe said the conditions she and her fellow skiers received the opportunity to showcase their skills on were near ideal.
"The pipe was running so fast and so clean and we had bluebird skies and a perfect day. I was able to let my amplitude go and I was able to grab all my tricks," she said. "I think just putting down a clean, technical run really set me up for the top."
As well, Mother Nature cooperated by putting out enough sun to create some warm conditions in Colorado.
"We had about the best luck weather-wise. We qualified on the perfect bluebird day and then we caught finals on a perfect sunny day. No wind, and the temperature was sitting at minus-2. It was not too cold. I rode in a hoodie," Sharpe said.
Sharpe was thrilled to get the chance to cheer on her brother Darcy in the snowboard slopestyle event the next day. The younger Sharpe placed sixth with an 86.00 as fellow Canuck Max Parrot blew the doors off the competition with a 97.00. American Chris Corning took second while Norway's Mons Roisland placed third.
Sharpe enjoys the chance to mingle with the snowboarders, which she doesn't get the chance to do as much as she'd like throughout the year.
"It's such a good vibe and everybody's all together," she said. "I really like when they overlap."
Snowboarder Spencer O'Brien of Vancouver topped the podium in the women's slopestyle snowboard compete, as she took a 95.00 to top American Jamie Anderson and Finland's Enni Rukajarvi.