newsCO.com.au | PyeongChang Winter Games: Lydia Lassila crashes out

February 15, 2018

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2018-02-15 14:38:00

IT WAS the last jump of the night and as it turned out it would be the last jump of her career.

Lydia Lassila’s storied, almost two-decade career came to a close when she failed to qualify for the finals of the freestyle aerials at the Winter Olympics.

She overbalanced on the landing of her first jump, missing the top six and automatic qualification.

At her next attempt she also couldn’t control her landing, missing the 12-woman final to finish 20th overall.

Danielle Scott was the only Australian to move directly through to Friday’s finals in fifth but Laura Peel joined her later by finishing the repechage round in third.

Sam Wells also dipped out, finishing 23rd overall.

Lassila became just the second Australian woman to get to five Winter Olympics and the first to actually compete in all five after former aerial skier Jacqui Cooper was injured in training ahead of the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City. The highlight of Lassila’s remarkable career came when she captured a gold medal at the Vancouver Winter Olympics in 2010.

It came four year after she tore her ACL while looking on track for success in the finals of competition in Turin.

At Sochi 2014 she focused on improving her sport after it had stagnated when many competitors were trying simpler jumps due to changes in competition qualifying rules.

She became the first woman to attempt a quad-twisting triple somersault in competition – and did it in the final of the Sochi event.

While not landing it, she still managed to finish third.

Initially unsure whether to continue in the sport, the mother of two decided to have a last tilt in PyeongChang at the age of 36.

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