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Canada’s Travis Gerrits wins World Cup freestyle aerials silver

Travis Gerrits, of Canada, celebrates after his last jump in the men's aerial event during World Cup freestyle skiing competition Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, at Deer Valley in Park City, Utah. Gerrits took second place.

Rick Bowmer/AP

Canada's Travis Gerrits won silver in World Cup freestyle aerials and stepped onto the podium for the second time in his career Friday.

The 21-year-old native of Milton, Ont., scored 115.83 points to finish behind Maxim Gustik of Belarus, who had 117.85 points for his first World Cup gold.

"I'm on top of the world," said Gerrits. "There's not much I could have done better today and to get second place with what I did was awesome."

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Gerrits barely made it into the first final round of 12 athletes in 11th. The competition used the new Olympic format that requires four jumps in total, with each narrowing the field from qualification to 12, then eight and finally four athletes.

"Although we use this format in our summer water ramp competitions, on snow it was a completely different story," said Gerrits.

"I'm actually super tired. We've been standing around for about five hours. You just use so much energy to keep activation levels where they're supposed to be so that you'll be ready to jump when you have to."

American rookie Michael Rossi grabbed bronze, scoring 111.37 points for his top career performance.

All took advantage of a poor landing by top-ranked Jia Zongyang of China, who had two of the highest scores Friday but also a slap-back landing on his final jump. He finished with 101.36 points.

Defending women's champion Xu Mengtao of China retained her Deer Valley title, landing a jump with a high degree of difficulty in the finals.

Australia's Laura Peel took silver and China's Zhang Xin won bronze.

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— With files from the Associated Press.

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