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Bird of prey flees

Ian Cropp

BEAVER CREEK – The Bird of prey is MIA.During Sunday’s World Cup Birds of Prey slalom event, a peregrine falcon named Liberty flew away from its handlers while being showcased to fans.”I don’t know where she is,” said Michael Cepak, one of the bird’s handlers who is a senior at Air Force Academy. “She may be somewhere in between the (Birds of Prey) lift and the (Grouse Mountain) lift. She caught a thermal and took it to the top of the mountain.”Liberty’s handlers say she’s never flown away before.”Not like this,” Cepak said. “We’ve never had it happen on a mountain with a blizzard.”Cepak and other Air Force classmates, despite having considerable amounts of homework, and exams on the horizon, plan on staying in the area overnight so they can search for the bird at daybreak today.Sports Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 14631, or icropp@vaildaily.com.


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