Posts Tagged ‘Colton Moore’

Could Winter X been any more dramatic this year?  As the final ski and snowboard event before the Olympics, there was a lot of anticipating, predicting, and wondering.  While the favorites tried to stake a claim on the gold, the underdogs and those who would have to wait another four years grabbed the opportunity to showcase their talent.  There was Shaun White’s “will he or won’t he” question of attendance and an on-line debate over spins versus style.  Above all, in a sport that probably will never see the Olympics, one man turned tragedy into triumph in a celebration of brotherly love, going big, and following your passion.

Best Female Athlete – Lindsey Jacobellis (Snowboard)
Although Kelly Clark deserves all the acclaim for being the winningest female athlete in the X Games, we cannot forget about Lindsey Jacobellis, who is now the female athlete with the most gold.  Her smart riding and consistency allowed her to obtain her eighth one in the Snowboard X finals and dominate the field, Olympics be damned.

Best Male Athlete – Tucker Hibbert (Snowmobile)

Speaking of dominance, no man has seven-peated at X until Tucker Hibbert crossed the SnoCross finish line.  He also has the most National wins so this really isn’t a surprise.  His hard work and discipline is as much to credit as his talent.

Newcomer to Watch – Chloe Kim (Snowboard)

You know an athlete is awesome when the only thing keeping her from the Olympics is her age.  Forget the Shaun White and Ayumu Hirano comparisons; Chloe Kim made a name for herself in the Women’s Superpipe with her high-flying, easy-going style.  The future of women’s snowboarding has arrived!

Most Dramatic Finals – Men’s Ski Slopestyle
The Men’s Ski Slopestyle finals had so many moments to remember: Andreas Hatveit’s X Games swang song, the first triple cork in an X Games ski slopestyle contest, and the first repeat winner in ten years.  On top of that, we had an excellent mix of style and spins, as well as proof by Nick Goepper that if at first you don’t succeed, do it better on your next run.

Best Trick – Danny Davis’s switch method (Snowboard)
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From Chris Wellhausen / Transworld Snowboarding
In an era where most riders spin to win, Danny Davis aired out a a huge switch method in the Men’s Superpipe finals.  While it might not look as fancy, the technical skill it required, along with the opportunity for self-expression, was exactly what propelled him to the top and what snowboarding needs to not forget.

Picture Perfect Moment – Mark McMorris receives his slopestyle silver medal from his mom.
Technically this is a video, and it’s not pro quality. However, the moment is too adorable to not recognize. Plus it’s nice to see Mark McMorris in good spirits after his gnarly crash.

Best Moment Outside Competition – the on-line Snowboard Big Air debate
Style versus math—what should count more?  When Halldor Helgason threw down a sick method, he made a statement and got people talking.  Add in some damning Tweets from pioneers like Pat Moore and Todd Richards, and it was clear that snowboarding is in need of some self-reflection and possibly a revolution (no pun intended).

Most Educational Moment – Jossi Wells show us how to land on your feet when things go awry. (Ski)
Big Air competitors are expected to wipe a lot.  Jossi Wells seemed to be immune to that, thanks to quick thinking  and physics.  The minute he knew the trick wasn’t going to work, he stretched out his arms and legs to slow down.  The increased air resistance bought him time to right himself and ski away.

Greatest Comeback – Kaya Turski (Ski)
Just four months after ACL surgery that involved a new technique, Kaya Turski came back to show why she is the top Women’s Ski Slopestyle competitor.  Her competitors, Maggie Voisin in particular, did not make it easy, but her mastery of the rails put her ahead of the back and on the road to Sochi gold.

Most Inspirational – Colten Moore (Snowmobile)

There was no a dry eye watching the Freestyle Snowmobile finals.  Colten Moore didn’t just come back from separating his pelvis; he returned after losing his brother in the same contest last year.  Some would walk away or at least take more time to recuperate physically and mentally, but Colten gave the ride of his life.  Regardless of your personal faith, it was obvious that Caleb was right there by his side.

Lifetime Achievement Award – Gretchen Bleiler (Snowboard)
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From Mahala Gaylord / The Denver Post
Gretchen Bleiler has been one of the most influential female snowboarders.  She’s the first woman to land a Crippler 540 and the first female action sports athlete to appear on the cover of the ESPN the Magazine.  Her visibility and enthusiasm helped the ladies of Superpipe get noticed, and her comeback from a horrifying eye injury is nothing short of miraculous.  Even though she won’t be on the X Games leaderboard, Gretchen’s influence will undoubtedly still be felt.

I’d like to conclude this wrap-up with my predictions for the Olympics, which has continued to change with the onslaught of injuries:
Snowboard Slopestyle – Max Parrot and Jamie Anderson
Snowboard Halfpipe – Iouri Podladtchikov and Kelly Clark
Ski Slopestyle – Nick Goepper and Kaya Turski
Ski Halfpipe – David Wise and Maddie Bowman

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Even though we live in the computer age, I have learned that sometimes the internet cannot replace good ol’ cable TV. My X Games viewing experience got off to a frustrating start, as I struggled with remote access and connection issues. There’s nothing worse than having your connection die right when you’re about to see if someone is going to snag gold on their last run (Kaya Turski) or what their new trick looks like (Joe Parsons’ “gator wrassler”, which I missed twice!). I also had to miss out on street snowboarding.

Nevertheless, I managed to catch some sick ski slopestyle action and freestyle snowmobiling, as well the amazing celebration of Sarah Burke’s legacy which thankfully went uninterrupted. The candlelit process down the halfpipe was beautiful, and it made me cry. Then I smiled because that’s what Sarah was known for and what she would want us to do.

Ski thoughts

  • Tom Wallisch throws double backflips for fun.  Something isn’t right about that…or the fact that it doesn’t give you a high score (welcome to the X Games).
  • Russ Henshaw and Anna Segal were celebrating Australia Day with bright yellow jackets.
  • Devon Logan had a great run but only spun in one direction (left). Nevertheless she was able to get a high score. Perhaps it was the multitude of switch tricks.
  • Slopestyle had lots of drama: Alex Schlopy was injured but still competed; defending champ Sammy Carlson not qualifying; and this year’s winners getting the gold on their last runs.
  • Very bummed about missing Kaya Turski’s switch 1080, the first by a female skier, live. Thank goodness for recaps.
  • Tom called himself a “second-run guy” at Killington. Now it’s more accurate to call him a “last-run guy”.
  • Andreas Hatveit’s double cork octo grab (both hands on skis) was a picture-worthy trick.
  • 17-year-old rookie Nick Goepper put up a good fight. Notice how the young rookies have been coming in and making their mark? There was Bobby Brown in 2010, Torin Yater-Wallace and Alex Schlopy in 2011, and now Nick.

Snowmobile thoughts

  • The Moore brothers seemed intent on giving me a heart attack with so many close calls. First there was Colton’s 120 foot fall, which he bounced back on. Then Caleb’s fingers slid down the seat, losing one hand’s grip, before he got back on.
  • It was noted that Colton may have been the happiest person to have fallen from over 100 feet.
  • More speed = more tricks = Joe Parsons leading for a bit.
  • An “aww” moment happened when it was revealed that Caleb’s motivation came from seeing his little brother crash and then get a high score. The Moores are up there with the Elrics and Wincesters when it comes to brotherly love.
  • Heath Frisby played it safe. Apparently the front flip has been on his mind. Now I’m nervous for him.
  • Joe seems to have a Travis Pastrana-like super tweaked, almost-squirrely style.
  • Colton’s no-handed flip extension is also really sick; it’s like he’s about to come off the bike.
  • I have totally been proved wrong about which Moore brother is the better rider. Stoked about both of them getting two spots on the podium—who says Texans can’t ride snowmobiles?
  • Something worth noting about the Moores: even though they’ve only been riding snowmobiles for 3 years, they have had experience with doing freestyle on ATVs. So it’s not like you can instantly become a freestyle snowmobiler.
  • Also, the way Colton twisted around to have his back take the impact shows exactly how skilled these athletes are. Knowing how to fall can make the difference between walking away and being seriously injured.

Congratulations to Kaya Turski (Women’s Ski Slopestyle), Forest Bailey (Snowboard Street), Colton Moore (Snowmobile Freestyle), and Tom Wallisch (Men’s Ski Slopestyle) for grabbing the gold!

Prediction Status: 2/3
Quote of the Day: “If you are looking for her legacy, you will find it in all the faces you see here tonight and all those that line halfpipes and come down mountains for years and years to come. That is where you will find Sarah Burke.” – Sal Masakela
Trick of the Day: Andreas Hatveit’s double cork
Inspiration of the Day: Sarah Burke
CelebrateSarah, from official X Games Tumblr
from the official X Games Tumblr
Question of the Day: What did you think of Colton Moore’s Tebowing?