2012 Winter Dew Tour: Nick Geopper wins freeski slopestyle, Tom Wallisch takes championship

By Tyler Tate

For the Deseret News

Published: Sunday, Feb. 12 2012 8:05 p.m. MST

Bobby Brown performs a trick during the Men's Freeski Slopestyle at the 2012 Winter Dew Tour Toyota Championships

Joey Ferguson, Deseret News

SNOWBASIN RESORT — Nick Geopper finally got the elusive win he had been chasing all season in the 2012 Winter Dew Tour at the Toyota Championships.

After a second and third place finish in the first two stops, Geopper finally beat Tom Wallisch ending his undefeated season.

"It has been a battle all year," Geopper said. "This win feels so great, I fought for it all season long. To beat Tom was tough, especially with the way that he has been riding this season. This win definitely gives me a huge boost for next season."

Tom Wallisch, who resides in Utah to train for skiing and study at the University of Utah, placed second in the Toyota Championships, but had the overall points lead and was crowned the 2012 Men's Freeski Dew Tour Champion and the Toyota Athlete of the Year. Wallisch placed first in the first two stops and was looking for the sweep, but fell 2.75 points short of perfection.

"This Dew Cup is so awesome," Wallisch said. "To win the cup in front of the home crowd, in front of family and friends is so special. It's tough to come in second for the event, but I am happy to have this championship win out of the way. Now I can really focus back on my schoolwork."

Park City native Joss Christensen placed eighth in the event with a score of 82.00.

"Riding at home in Utah really helps bring me extra confidence when I ride," Christensen said. "I have an extra urge to ski well and whether you win or lose, I get to have my family here to congratulate me. To see my family all smiling when I finish the run is so amazing."

Kaya Turski of Canada continued her winning ways, claiming the Women's Freeski Slopestyle and the 2012 Winter Dew Cup. Coming off an X-Games gold medal and back-to-back tour wins including the Toyota Championships, Turski used that momentum to led after her first run, allowing her to use her second run as a victory lap.

"It feels so good," Turski said. "This course was amazing, the snow was soft and forgiving so it made riding so much easier. I had so much momentum coming into the event and I skied great"

Turski was the designer of the "Believe in Sarah" stickers that have been sold to raise funds for Sarah Burke to help her family with the cost of the medical bills following her death.

"This win and Dew Cup are for Sarah," Turski said. "She inspired so many girls to compete and I know she is proud of every female skier."

Park City resident Ashley Battersby came in sixth in the event.

"That was one of my best runs I have ever had," Battersby said. "It was by far my best switch 900 I have ever pulled. I am always improving and it makes it so much fun. Having my family here to cheer me on makes me so happy. Kaya (Turski) and I are great friends and we push each other out there on the slope, so to see her win makes me smile." The 2012 Winter Dew Tour was a four-day competition hosted at the Snowbasin Ski Resort featuring the top athletes in skiing and snowboarding.

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