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It's a fascinating, if somewhat freakish, story: There were 24 women's ski halfpipe slots available for the 2018 Olympics, but each country only can send a maximum of four skiers. The 33-year-old Californian found a loophole in the qualification standings.

She's American, but competed for Hungary, which is where her grandparents are from.

Not everyone loves that Swaney figured out this way to make it to the Olympics without being a true Olympic-level athlete.

Despite finishing near the bottom at all the worldwide events she's attended in the past four years, she still collected the required number of FIS points to reach Olympic standard, at great personal cost.

Swaney met those requirements. It's here where we can really discuss how she made it to the Olympics, and why, despite her lack of ability, Swaney managed to finish events outside of last place. She completed both of her runs but did not attempt any tricks, leaving her way behind her fellow competitors.

And that's exactly what Swaney did. "So I couldn't be proud dealing some pins with some insane exotic country and being giving (criticism) to this girl that is trying to get into the Olympics".

In a discipline where athletes are judged and rewarded for high-flying tricks and manoeuvres as they swing from side to side of the halfpipe, Swaney was content with merely navigating the course in safe style, failing to execute a trick.

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Speaking to the Denver Post, FIS ski halfpipe and slopestyle judge Steele Spence said: "She went to every world cup where there were only 24, 25, or 28 women". While a slight improvement over her first run, it was nowhere near the 72.80 needed to crack the top 12 and ski the final. But she didn't fall.

OK, maybe "competed" isn't the best word to describe what Swaney did in the qualifying round of the women's halfpipe on Monday. If she finished in the top 30 consistently, she'd be on her way to the Olympics.

At 19, Elizabeth Swaney ran against Arnold Schwarzenegger to be governor of California. "But I worked really hard for several years to achieve this".

"I want to inspire others in Hungary and the world to become involved in freestyle skiing", she said.

Elizabeth Swaney, an American, turned in one of the most insane Olympic performances today in the Freestyle Skiing event in Pyeonchang for Team Hungary.

Since the field in the women's freeski halfpipe isn't that deep, she qualified mostly by not falling down, instead of, you know, being good at her sport.

"If you put in the time and put in the effort to be here", said Sharpe, "you have as much of a right to be here as I do".


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