20/02/2014 | by Sam McMahon
There was plenty of drama at the X Games superpipe even before qualification got underway. After much to-ing and fro-ing, Shaun White finally decided that he’d give X a miss for the first time since he was a mere lad of thirteen. His sights are set on the Olympics, meaning he won’t be around to attempt the unprecedented seven-peat. What’s more, Japanese riders Ayumu Hirano and Kazuhiro Kokubo both had to pull out with injuries, allowing Mason Aguirre and Gabe Ferguson to step into their spots.
With both the champion and the young pretender absent, Iouri Podlatchikov swooped in and took the top spot in qualifying. The Swiss mister (and king of the claim) put down a run of method, frontside 540, backside 900, cab double cork 1260 and backside alley-oop 540 nosegrab.
Iouri Podlatchokov’s X Games 2014 Halfpipe Qualifying Run
By all accounts this was iPod in fourth, or maybe even third gear. There was no YOLO flip in sight, and by his standards it was pretty tame. Having said that, his first method is ridiculous – one of his biggest ever, maybe?
Ben Ferguson and Danny Davis rounded out the top three with solid if unexceptional runs. With all three riders signing off their runs with some sort of alley-oop, it’s fair to say that they must be so hot right now.
Ben Ferguson’s X Games 2014 Halfpipe Qualifying Run
Danny Davis’ X Games 2014 Halfpipe Qualifying Run
You can see the full list of qualifiers below. Regardless of what happens in the final, one thing’s for sure: we’ll have a new X Games superpipe champion for the first time since Steve Fisher took the gold in 2007. In every year since, Shaun has been absolutely dominant – even picking up the first ever perfect 100 score in 2012. Who’ll be the one to take the top spot in the biggest contest of the year (unless you count that other thing happening next month)? Give it your best Lawro and leave your predictions below.
X GAMES 2014 MEN’S SUPERPIPE QUALIFYING RESULTS
(Top eight go through)
- Iouri Podlatchikov
- Ben Ferguson
- Danny Davis
- Benji Farrow
- Louie Vito
- Scotty James
- Yiwei Zhang
- Greg Bretz
- Christian Haller
- Shuhei Sato
- Taka Hiraoka
- Gabe Ferguson
- Scotty Lago
- Taylor Gold
- Mason Aguirre