So, we’re still here in Japan, knee-deep in blood, me and Foster, slaying the slimy serpent of this Nippon Open. We spent the afternoon staring into the face of a freezing icy windstorm as riders did damage in the Superpipe. Yesterday’s marathon qualifier brought 24 shreds out into the fog again this morning to battle it out on the way to Sunday’s grand finale.
Much respect due to the fore-runners, unlucky casualties of the cut, who rode early and got the crowd fired up today. Heikki Sorsa, that vertical-mutant Stefan Karlsson, and Japanese upstart Takumi Suzuki. With the growing crowd at attention, the runs began.Daniel Franck had a couple strong ones, and should be in the final tomorrow. Joining him will likely be Keir Dillon, Therry Brunner, Terrible Andaloo (Trevor Andrew) and Suisse’ Dani Costandache. Add in a few more names to make a twelve-man showdown, and that’s my odds for tomorrow. Hopefully the pipe will hold. Rio Tahara took a nasty slam this morning, and played dead in the flat of the pipe for a five minute delay, and luckily rose to his feet and the cheers of his loyal fans.
Yesterday the women had first dibs on the pipe, but not so today. As the men’s runs finished and time came for women’s pipe training, the weather, had something else in mind. Blasting, freezing, spiking rain, whipped in the wind. Concensus voting in the women competitor’s camp resulted in a re-schedule, and all the ladies will run tomorrow. I think boardercross is over. Somebody won.
Tonight there’s a photo shoot, a party in town, and the snowdeck park is getting sessioned heavily. Check back in tomorrow for continued coverage from the Japanese press office.