Mark McMorris Gold Medal Big Air Winter X Games 2015
The backside triple cork 1440 is dead, long live the backside triple cork 1620! Whereas only a few weeks ago everyone was bemoaning the fact that progression at the Air & Style seemed to have stalled, last night all of the riders on the podium put down a variation of the same trick with an extra 180.
Mark McMorris walked away with the top spot, his second scoring hit was also a triple dipper, but one not often seen: a frontside triple 1440, actually the same as the first one ever put down by Torstein Horgmo.
That was enough to give him a combined score of 88 and a comfortable lead over fellow countryman Max Parrot and a ton of respect - spinning four times and flipping three off your heels is hard. At night and in front of thousands, harder still. McLuvin' It.
Hit next to see Max Parrot's second place runs.
Max Parrot Silver Medal Big Air Winter X Games 2015
Whereas McLuvin' went frontside triple for his second hit, Maxence Parrot cab triple under 1440: essentially taking off switch into three straight backflips before spinning a 270 and riding out switch again.
It's not WL's favourite of the triple cork varieties, but Parrot did switch up the grabs midway which gave him the edge over Yuki Kadono, rather going full Stale and tweaking it out he must've been responding ironically to the people that complain big air is all about the indys and mutes - he went for both.
Hit next to see Yuki Kadono's third place runs.
Yuki Kadono Bronze Medal Big Air Winter X Games 2015
Yuki Kadono is only eighteen years old and after really impressing us at the Olympics last year and the Air & Style over the last few months he was back in full force last night: a back triple 1620 and a switch back triple 1620 put eight points between him and fourth place Sven Thorgren.
The landing of the latter was pretty sketchy, but was still marked down by a bizarre amount, only 23 points given. It does beg that old 'if, but, maybe' debate - if he'd ridden away clean would that have been enough to put a 'jolly foreigner' in first place at the X Games for the first time in what feels like years? But at the end of the day bronze is bronze. We're excited to see what he's got up his sleeve next - Yuki Kan Do No harm in our eyes.
Hit next to see a highlights edit from the finals.
Best Of X Games Big Air 2015
Bringing up the rear in the six man final were the three Norwegians: Sven Thorgren, Stale Sandbech and Torstein Horgmo in that order. Whilst none put down two runs to score anywhere near the top three, they were at least mixing it up slightly: Thorgren threw a cab flatspin 1440 and Stale was stomping clean frontside flat 1440s in the heats, arguably much more difficult that triple dipping but unfortunately less crowd pleasing to the American Navy flag flying, Jeep toting viewing public.
In conclusion, it did feel like a step up from the other Big Air contests this year, namely the Air & Style, and unlike any of the tours this year at least all the big names were present all together, but if a military sponsored event is the best snowboarding can do these days, we're still in a sorry state of affairs.