We're all confused by the Team Hungary halfpipe skier who can't do any tricks

Elizabeth Swaney's trick-free halfpipe run has caused a bit of a stir among fans and officials.
by Scott Stump / / Source: TODAY

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For any weekend warriors wondering if they could ever compete in an Olympic event, Team Hungary skier Elizabeth Swaney is here to serve as inspiration.

The U.S.-born Swaney, 33, turned in an oddly captivating qualifying run on Monday in which she leisurely skied the Pyeongchang halfpipe without doing a single trick.

Looking like a fan plucked from the crowd, Swaney attempted none of the aerial maneuvers we've seen from her competitors, and barely cleared the lip of the halfpipe with each turn.

Unsurprisingly, she did not qualify for the finals.

So how did Swaney make it all the way to the Olympics with such limited skills?

There are 24 spots in the field, and each nation can only send its top four skiers to the women's halfpipe. Swaney, who is ranked No. 34 in the world, was able to make it due to injuries and some countries not using all their spots, according to NBC Olympics.

Swaney, who only began freestyle skiing in 2013, is able to compete for Hungary because her grandparents are from there.

The native Californian met International Ski Federation requirements by posting clean, though unspectacular, runs at Olympic qualifying events.

She needed at least one top 30 finish at a World Cup event. Some of the events featured less than 30 competitors, so all she had to do was make it down the halfpipe without taking a tumble.

A University of California-Berkeley graduate with a master's degree in design studies from Harvard, Swaney is hoping her memorable halfpipe run inspires others to get off the couch.

"I want to show others that freestyle skiing is possible and it is never too late to get into this sport, and to help others to dream and to progress the sport in Hungary,'' she told Reuters.

"I hope this can be a platform to inspire others."

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