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Chloe Kim rallies, wins in first snowboard contest in 22 months

Olympic champion Chloe Kim bounces back from a fall during her first run to top the halfpipe at the Laax Open in her first competition since March of 2019.

Chloe Kim fell on her first big trick in competition in 22 months. Less than an hour later, she won the Laax Open, kicking off a yearlong run-up to the Beijing Winter Olympics.

Kim prevailed with 89.75 points on her second of two runs, landing a frontside 1080.

“Tonight I wanted to try a new trick on my second run, but at the end of the day, winning is more important,” Kim said, according to U.S. Ski and Snowboard. “I wanted to put something down and told myself I didn’t need to go as big as I did on my first run. I just wanted to slow things down a bit.”

Kim is the only woman capable of landing back-to-back 1080s, a combination that she didn’t attempt in her first contest since the March 2019 Burton U.S. Open.

She was in fifth place of six riders in the first run on Saturday, falling on her first frontside 1080 attempt.

Kim, who in PyeongChang became the youngest Olympic halfpipe champ at 17, beat a Laax field that included Spaniard Queralt Castellet. Castellet won last year’s Winter X Games in Aspen while Kim took the season off for freshman classes at Princeton.

Next week, Kim goes for her fifth X Games Aspen halfpipe title, which would move her one shy of Kelly Clark‘s female record.

Fellow Olympic gold medalist Shaun White is also expected to compete at X Games, his first contest since PyeongChang.

White’s primary rival, Australian Scotty James, was upset by Japanese Yuto Totsuka at the Laax Open.

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