Ski Industry News

American Snowboarders (Once Again) Prove They’re the World’s Best

by Kirsten Dobroth | February 19, 2018

It’s no secret that Team USA has a stacked freestyle skiing and snowboarding team. At the last Olympics in Sochi in 2014, Americans pulled in 12 medals in freestyle skiing and snowboarding (including a complete podium sweep of the men’s freestyle skiing slopestyle event). This year, Team USA continues to dominate, with American snowboarders claiming men’s and women’s gold in the halfpipe and slopestyle events in PyeongChang (including the US’s first gold of the Games).

Halfpipe

If you weren’t part of the collective scream unleashed by Americans all over the country (and world) when Shaun White stomped his gold medal run (in his final go at it) during last week’s competition, we’re sorry you missed what may very well be the last appearance of a legend at the Games. No stranger to the podium, when backed into a corner by Japan’s Ayuma Hirano, White delivered the performance of a lifetime, and put down a score of 97.75 to take home the win.

 
And White wasn’t the only one to take the top spot in halfpipe competition. Fellow Californian Chloe Kim soared to gold in her first Olympics (at 17, she’s been on the seen for a while, but was to young to participate in Sochi in 2014), putting down a solid run on her first attempt to take home gold, but still going big on her last run (and the final one of the competition) to walk away both with gold, and knowing that she threw down her toughest tricks to snag it.

Slopestyle

According to post competition interviews, 17-year-old Red Gerard slept in the day of his slopestyle finals competition, lost his jacket, borrowed a jacket from his roommate, and still somehow managed to put down a gold-winning run on his last pass through the Olympic slopestyle park, becoming the first athlete to take home top honors for the home team in the process. While we normally might advocate for better competition-day planning, we’re putting it out there that maybe Gerard should stick with his winning formula.

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"What, like it's hard?" @redgerard, definitely.

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And then there’s Jamie Anderson, one of the winningest Winter X Games athletes of all time, the defending gold medalist in Sochi in the same event. Anderson fought through some serious wind to land her winning run, one of the few athletes able to get through the course without crashing because of the day’s conditions.

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