More Sports / Winter Sports

Reira Iwabuchi, Takeru Otsuka win big air World Cup gold

Kyodo

Japanese teenager Reira Iwabuchi won her second straight women’s World Cup big air competition on Saturday, while compatriot Takeru Otsuka topped the podium in the men’s event.

The 16-year-old Iwabuchi, who finished fourth in February’s Pyeongchang Olympics, earned a two-jump total of 166.50 points in Italy’s Modena for her second World Cup victory in as many competitions this season.

Fellow countrywoman Miyabi Onitsuka finished 1.5 points behind for silver, while Pyeongchang gold medalist Anna Gasser of Austria took bronze.

“I’m glad my third and final run went well and contributed to this result. I was able to compete with my motivation high,” Iwabuchi said of her jump which featured a clean backside double-cork 1080 mute.

In the men’s competition, Otsuka edged American Chris Corning to take his first World Cup gold after finishing with a total of 186.75. Finland’s Kalle Jarvilehto finished third, while Japan’s Ruki Tobita missed the podium in fourth.

“I’m glad I was able to ride like I always do in front of so many people. I enjoyed it,” said the 17-year-old Otsuka, who finished runner-up behind Corning in September’s World Cup season opener in Cardrona, New Zealand.