X Games Recap: McMorris makes history

January 27, 2013, 10:25 AM

by Tom Ruminski, sportsnet.ca

Mark McMorris’s last run in the Men’s Snowboard Slopestyle Final could have been a victory lap.

However, the young Canadian didn’t catch the memo as he posted the highest score ever recorded in the event’s history at the Winter X Games.

The wunderkind from Regina spent months preparing to defend his title against rival and five-time gold medalist Shaun White. However, not even the legendary White — who ended up finishing fifth — could match McMorris’s determination on Saturday, and ultimately the mind-boggling 98.00 he posted on the judges’ scorecard.

With DJ Khaled’s “All I Do Is Win” pumping on the speakers at the Buttermilk Mountain course, the 19-year-old McMorris executed his line with a surgical precision rarely seen in the sport, and even threw in a jaw-dropping cab double cork 1260 just for good measures. Watch McMorris stomp his way into the history books.

Based on this performance, McMorris is now considered a heavy favourite for a gold medal at the 2014 Sochi Olympics when slopestyle makes its debut, and has cemented himself as freestyle snowboarding’s newest superstar.

Here is what the now three-time X Games gold medalist had to say about his outer-worldly performance.

Top Canadians

Saturday provided to be another memorable day for the Canadian contingent in Aspen. Especially, for 18-year old X Games’ rookie Max Parrot, who surprisingly won a silver medal after finishing second behind McMorris in the Men’s Slopestyle Final. The Canadian teenager, who hails from Quebec, landed numerous massive tricks on his way to scoring a 90.00. Check out Parrot’s silver run.

Spencer O’Brien continued Canada’s medal haul by collecting a bronze in the Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle Final. On her final run of the day O’Brien put up an 88.66, however, she wasn’t able to catch American Jamie Anderson who earned a 93.00 after nailing a massive cab 720. Here is O’Brien’s run vs. Anderson’s golden throw down.

O’Brien’s bronze medal run.

Anderson’s gold medal run.

Top Performers

Overall, Saturday provided to be a historic night for many athletes. In the Women’s SuperPipe Final an epic duel emerged between the event’s greatest ambassador, Kelly Clark, and emerging star Elena Hight. With thousands of bundled up fans looking on, Hight made X Games history by becoming the first athlete, including both men and women, to nail a double alley oop rodeo. Watch history go down.

In any other scenario, her performance would have been impossible to replicate, yet alone top. However, Clark is not a human being. The female version of Shaun White scored a run of 90.33 to steal the thunder and gold away from High, whose best effort was a 90.00. Watch the Clark three-peat in the SuperPipe Final.

With the bright lights back on the Big Air course expectations were high after the show that McMorris and Horgmo put on Friday. The freestyle skiers didn’t fail to deliver. In particular, Henrik Harlaut wowed the crowd with a two-run-best score of 97.00. The Swede had the fans in the palm of his hands the entire night, and then knocked them all out of their socks with a nose butter triple cork 1620.

Finally, Levi LaVallee won his second gold medal of Winter X with a dominating showing in Snowmobile Speed and Style. Watch Launchin’ Levi go big in the highlight factory.

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Highlight Factory

Shaun White thrills the crowd by hitting the first triple cork in the history of Slopestyle at Winter X.

American Levi LaValle winning his second gold medal.

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