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U.S. snowboarder Langland pins hopes on Olympic podium at Beijing 2022

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LAUSANNE, March 3 (Xinhua) — American snowboarder Hailey Langland has her eyes firmly set on an Olympic redemption at next year’s Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games, reported olympic.org on Wednesday.

The 20-year-old talent, who has established herself as one of the world’s leading snowboarders as a multi-medalist in big air and slopestyle at the X Games, missed January’s X Games in Aspen, the United States, after dislocating her elbow in a practice run.

She told the International Olympic Committee (IOC) website that her previous Olympic experiences and the recent injury sideline made her more thirsty for the Beijing Olympics.

“I’m super, super excited for Beijing,” said Langland, who’s never been to China before. “Even though there have been so many opportunities to compete in contests there, I haven’t made it to one of those events yet.

“It would just be unreal for me to go to China for my first time and it’ll be the Olympics, so I’m really looking forward to it.”

Langland, a competitor at the Lillehammer Winter Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in 2016, arrived at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Games as one of the medal favorites when she was 17, but finished a disappointing sixth in slopestyle and 14th in big air.

“Obviously, the last time I went to the Olympics, I didn’t do as well as I wanted to, and so I’m definitely looking at Beijing to get some redemption.”

Calling back to her memories in PyeongChang, Langland said it’s crazy to be an Olympian at only 17 years old.

“I was so young when I first went to the Olympics… I didn’t really realize the full capacity of what was going on until after the event, and even now, three years later, I’m just like, ‘I’m so lucky that I was able to go, and I had a great time.’

“The results were not what I wanted, but I was still so happy to even be there and be a part of the U.S. team. It was such a cool experience and I’m definitely looking forward to hopefully going again,” said the snowboarding sensation.

With less than a year to go until Beijing 2022, Langland, who’s at three weeks of healing on her elbow and still trying to secure a spot in the U.S. Olympic team, has set her goal to prove herself at the Olympic Winter Games if she qualifies.

“My goal for Beijing, if I do qualify, is to just take what I’ve learned over the past two times, in Lillehammer and in PyeongChang, and really just try and focus on where my weaknesses were.

“I’d also love to be able to prove to everyone my skills, and I definitely want to showcase the best riding that I have. It’s an important event, but making the memories and being able to go is just as good as winning,” she said.

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