Saturday night’s Big Air contest served as verifiably extreme exclamation point to the day. Truth be told, it was more of an exhibition than a contest because there were only four shreds selected to send it. The jump was a step-up gap that had the crowd craning their necks with jaws dropped and fists raised in approval. Stuff of X-Games legend.
Andreas Wiig, Torstein Horgmo,Travis Rice and Kevin Pearce were the four heads that handled the jump.
This was the format: Three shred-on-shred face-off rounds with the winners advancing. Each dude got to give ‘er twice.The judging was split between the fans voting via text message and living legend Todd Richards.
In the first round Wiig threw a back rodeo nine, but Kevin came in hot with a front 10 tailgrab. Both guys failed to put down their second jumps, with Wiig missing his double cork 1080 and Pearce washing out on an attempted 1260. Pearce advanced.
In round two Horgmo chucked a switch back 1260 and stomped the snot out of it. Rice countered with his double-backside rodeo 1080 and also landed bolts. In their second run Horgmo gave the switch back 12 another go, but didn’t put it down, and Travis slow-rotated a shifty back three, relying on his first run to earn him the advance. But, the viewers and Todd gave it to Torstein.
In the finals Horgmo dropped first and again sent it switch backside, but only managed a 1080. Pearce attempted a front 12, but didn’t stomp it. Second run: Horgmo again spinning switch backside, but now dropping a shoulder and bringing around a 9. Pearce tried a front 10, but could make it happen.
In the end Horgmo got 68 percent of the viewers text votes, the nod from Todd and a gold medal to match his Oakley frogskins. Rock star status confirmed.