Jamie Nicholls took the gold medal at the British Big Air Invitational Championships, which took place at this weekend’s Metro Snow show.
A selection of the UK’s most talented young riders were invited to take part in the competition, which saw them throwing down some impressive tricks in front of a large crowd. Matt MacWhirter took second place, while Andy Nudds claimed third.
The standard had been set high earlier in the show, with the riders stomping some serious spins off the large snowflex kicker during the demo sessions and when the hour of the contest arrived, they stepped it up a gear.
During the opening jumps, sevens and fives seemed to be the norm, although the steepness of the snowflex kicker – constructed in the limited space available in Kensington’s Olympia exhibition centre – meant that some riders struggled to land their tricks.
A special mention should go to Sparrow Knox, who threw in some seriously steezy spins – complete with double shifties – but didn’t manage to stomp anything big enough to qualify for the final. The four who went through after their qualification jumps, were Andy Nudds, Matt MacWhirter, Danny McCormick and Jamie Nicholls.
As James Thorne and Patt Sharples got the crowd hyped, the last four standing dropped in for their final two runs. Nicholls stomped a sweet front five as his first trick, meaning that the others would have to land theirs to be in contention. Jamie then stepped it up again by landing a backside seven cleanly, setting the standard for the others to beat.
Unfortunately, none of the other three riders was able to hold their landings, although Andy Nudds’ final attempt at a huge back rodeo seven was inches away from being stomped.
While Nicholls was the clear winner, this balls out effort from Nudds was enough to give him third place, with Matt MacWhirter taking the silver medal.