Diminuative halfpipe star Louie Vito collected his first ever X-Games gold medal after a thrilling final in Tignes.
The contest was the highlight of last year’s inaugral X Games Europe, when eventual champion Iouri Podladtchikov nicked Shaun White‘s double McTwist 1260 and made it his own. I-Pod was back in Tignes to defend his title, and started strong with a run featuring that trick and two other double-corks. He stepped it up in his second attempt, landing the same tricks but bigger and better for a score of 90.33.
Louie Vito followed on shortly after, putting the misery of his first run behind him to notch up a 93.00. Like I-Pod he double-corked immediately, throwing a double crippler on his first hit. A Michalchuk, frontside double cork 10, cab double cork 10 and frontside 10 followed to put him ahead of the Swiss superstar. I-Pod retaliated with yet another attempt at the same routine, but sketched out on the landing of his double McTwist 12. He still carried enough speed to finish the run and, bizarrely, was awarded an even higher score than his earlier efforts. It still wasn’t enough to top Louie, who has been working hard to improve his amplitude in the pipe.
I-Pod’s fellow countryman Christian Haller put just one double cork into his final run (a frontside double 10 on his last hit) but the rest of his descent (front 10, cab 10, front 9, back 5) was enough to earn him 3rd place, ahead of all but the two multi-double-corkers.
As always, the videos will be up soon. Don’t go too far.
X GAMES EUROPE 2011
MEN’S HALFPIPE RESULTS
1. Louie Vito
2. Iouri Podlatchikov
3. Christian Haller