Freestyle Skiing

CBC Sports - Wednesday Feb. 19, 2014 15:49 ET

Rosalind Groenewoud goes for gold in ski halfpipe

Friend of the late Sarah Burke has good shot at a medal

Rosalind Groenewoud

Canadian halfpipe skier Roz Groenewoud competes in women's ski halfpipe on Thursday. (Mark Blinch/Reuters)

Canada's freestyle ski team has a chance to add to its impressive medal haul in Sochi on Thursday when Rosalind Groenewoud competes in the women's halfpipe.

Groenewoud, or "Roz G" as she's known in the freestyle skiing world, has a decent shot to be on the podium in the inaugural event.

This is the event that the late freestyle ski star Sarah Burke lobbied hard to have included in the Olympics, before she tragically died on a training run two years ago. Groenewoud was a good friend of Burke's, and says she'll be skiing in her memory.

Groenewoud is the X Games gold medallist in halfpipe from 2012, when she set a record score of 93.66. She made the podium again at the X Games this past January, finishing in second place just a month after having arthroscopic surgery on her knees.

That was a good sign that she was rounding into form in time for Sochi, where she's expected to medal.

"No one said this road to Sochi would be easy," Groenewoud told CBC at the time. "But luckily, I like challenges."

Keltie Hansen of Edmonton is the other Canadian in the event.

The event saw some controversy last week when British teenager Rowan Cheshire — a darkhorse for a medal — crashed and badly hurt herself in training.

Cheshire was unconscious and immobile on the course for several minutes. It was later revealed that she had a concussion, so she won't be competing.

Edmontonian Mike Riddle medalled in the inaugural men's event on Tuesday, winning a silver medal for Canada. It was Canada's 7th medal in freestyle skiing at these Games, more than any other nation.

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