Canada’s Kingsbury takes silver in moguls at Beijing Olympics

ZHANGJIAKOU, China — Canadian freestyle skier Mikael Kingsbury has been dethroned.

Kingsbury, the defending champion, settled for moguls silver with a score of 82.18 at the Beijing Olympics after being upset by Sweden’s Walter Wallberg in Saturday’s final.

Wallberg, the last skier down the hill, posted a stellar score of 83.23 to knock Kingsbury off the top podium spot.

“I tried to put the pressure on Walter, but he answered very well,” Kingsbury told CBC.

Japan’s Ikuma Horishima claimed bronze with a score of 81.48.

Kingsbury won moguls gold at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games and silver at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

“It’s a sport with a lot of pressure,” Kingsbury said. “We train four years for a one-day event pretty much. One medal, one chance. I’m proud with the way I dealt with the pressure.”

Today’s silver makes Kingsbury the first-ever male moguls skier to reach the podium at three consecutive Olympics.

Norway’s Kari Traa won moguls bronze at the 1998 Nagano Games, gold in 2002 at Salt Lake City and then silver at the 2006 Turin Olympics.

Alex Bilodeau of Rosemere, Que., remains the only moguls skier to successfully defend his Olympic title. Bilodeau won back-to-back golds for Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Games and 2014 Sochi Games.

Kingsbury is the most decorated moguls skier of all time with nine overall titles and 71 World Cup victories.

The native of Deux-Montagnes, Que., had the advantage of going last in the medal round after having the best score in Thursday’s qualifying round.

His 81.15 points in the qualifying round was more than two points better than the nearest competitor.

Quebec City’s Laurent Dumais was 26th overall after earning 71.39 points in the second qualifying round earlier Saturday.

Montreal’s Justine Dufour-Lapointe will compete in the women’s moguls final on Sunday.

Her older sister Chloe Dufour-Lapointe and Sofiane Gagnon of Whistler, B.C., will have a second chance to qualify for the final on Sunday ahead of the medal round later that day.

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