The second and last day of the Red Bull Nanshan Open was marred by less than ideal weather conditions. During a meeting with Judges, athletes and event organizers it was decided that the previous day’s qualifiers would determine the winners of the event. In lieu of full competition today, it was decided that the prize money would be shifted around and a smaller Method contest and rail jam would be held and the winners would be awarded a smaller prize purse.
Jeremy Thompson from the USA who qualified first from yesterday’s elimination round would take home the gold in China’s only 5Star event on the World Snowboard Tour. “It was a shame that the contest was changed, but when it comes to weather you just never know. At least no one was seriously injured riding the course in those conditions.” Thompson said, referring to Jusso Laivisto who injured his leg earlier in today’s event before it was called off. Thompson took first place with a cab double 900 mute, a front 1080 tail grab and a boardslide 270 out. He finished off his first place run with a stylish tailpress.
Although Findland’s Laivisto was injured in today’s event, he was able to qualify in second place yesterday and therefore make the podium in second today. Laivisto who won the event last year was more than happy to take part in this years event, “its exciting being in China and being at Nanshan resort, its not often that events are held in interesting places. Red Bull definitely does a great job putting this on.” He said. Laivisto’s run consisted of a Backside 900 mute, a front 1080 tail, a boardslide 270 out and a tail press.
In third was Sondre Tiller from Norway who did a cab 900 mute, a backside 720 mute, a frontside 270 out and a back lip slide. Tiller was also able to take second place in today’s modified event. The event was titled the “super method-off and rail Jam Bonus round” and was won by Canada’s Darcy Sharpe and Brage Richenberg from Norway, in Third. Although the contest was altered due to bad weather, the crowds on site were in awe by the crowd-pleasing tricks. The live broadcast went out to over 1.6 billion viewers across the Asian country.
With this 5Star Slopestyle event wrapped up, all eyes will now move onto the season’s first 6Star Halfpipe and Slopestyle event in Aspen Colorado; the Winter X Games. This is the first year that the event will be part of the World Snowboard Tour and will surely be a must see spectacle. Winter X Games 17 will take place Thursday January 23 to Sunday January 26.