The Vans Triple Crown Big air final was held Sunday March 10, 2002 and like other events throughout the weekend it had to be postponed for a couple of hours do to the weather. Due to the snow the previous night, the jump had to cut down making it more of a extra medium air than a big air. This forced most of the riders to work to put in the tech tricks. It’s pretty hard to make a backside 9 not look like a ballerina on speed off a 25 ft. jump, but when there are big bucks on the line people will try anything.
Since they only got two jumps we’ll keep this short and sweet. First, I would like to say that Sean Teadore kinda got robbed. Sean had the first jump of the day and stomped the hell out of a cab 7 and while it wasn?t the sickest jump of the day, I thought it defiantly deserved better than 16th place. All eyes were up top to see what slope style winner Josh Feliciano was going to do. Not one to disappoint the crowd, Josh threw his backside rodeo 9. A little had drag put him in sixth place. Canada’s Andrew Hardingham came out neon blazing and placed fifth with a sick as hell switch backside 7. That trick is hard to make look good, but his looked so pretty I wanted to put a dress on it and take it out to dinner. Rahm Klampert was in the running for a new Ford truck. All he had to do was place in the top three. Any other day a cab 9 would have done it, but not today. He would end up in fourth and the truck would go to Shaun White. Shaun doesn?t even have a damn driver’s license!
It was nice to see three different tricks for the top three finishers. The number three finisher, Nate Sheehan, put down the best cab 9 of the day. Always the crowd favorite Ben Hinkley let a Rippey flip go on his first run and was in first most of the way through the second round. That all changed when 16-year-old Ryan Paris unleashed the cab 1080 nose grab. Even he looked surprised when he stomped it. “I’m flying first class all the way home to New Hampshire,” he was overheard saying on the way to pick up his check.
So to sum up the weekend- a 15 year old won a truck , a 16 year old won the big air and a 17 year old won the slopestyle. The way these contests are going nowadays your going to be washed at 19.