Rana Okada retires
23-year-old halfpipe specialist Rana Okada has announced to step back from active competing.
Although it seems to be an early retirement for the Otsu Shiga native who placed fifth at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games halfpipe event and thus brought home the best ranking in women’s snowboard halfpipe contest riding in the history of the Japanese Snowboard Federation, the call was well-prepared.
“It's a pity that I didn't win an Olympic medal but I gave my best at Sochi and am satisfied to place fifth in a high-class field,” Okada said.
According to a press release, the result made her feeling to have achieved what she was going for and that she would now be open for something new.
Just a few weeks after her last ever contest the goofy rider got married in March and will now support her husband as he did over the past years when Okada traveled the world as snowboard pro.
Okada took part in 14 World Cup events over the past eight years of which she won the Stoneham comp last January.
The Quebec resort was also the place where she earned her first career WC podium coming out third in 2009.
The two-time Olympian (29th in Vancouver) represented her country at three World Championships (2007, 2009 and 2011) with the eighth rank in Ganwon, Korea, being her best finish at the FIS major event.