With only sixteen men and eight women invited, today's competition was a quick two-run-finals format at night under the lights . This was the first nighttime Grand Prix—the final one tomorrow will be at night, the X Games will be night, and so will the Olympics. So, it's good for the riders to make that transition.
Nevermind the warm ups, this thing got going hot right out of the gate. The obvious highlight was the competition debut of Shaun's double Mctwist 12, a trick he'd been working on all season and perfected after the Mammoth Grand Prix. The next most-obvious highlight was Scotty Lago’s ballistic, energized runs, the first one secured him a second place finish. Luke Mitrani had an on night, too, with his double Michealchucks, along with Jack who blasted a back 12. What?! Greg Bretz finally got on the podium after a season of close calls—he was one of the first to get that double Cork this summer. No one brought their safety runs—it was all on the line tonight.
Things we'd love to see tomorrow night:
Clair Bidez stomp that huge 9 on the first hit.
Another back 12 from Jack Mitrani.
We know Scotty Lago has back-to-back double corks. (No pressure)
Gretchen Bleiler get a better score for her same run.
OFFICIAL RESULTS—January 22, 2010
2010 Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix
Park City, Utah
4. Gretchen Bleiler, 42.50
5. Elena Hight, 40.00
6. Kaitlyn Farrington, 39.20
7. Maddy Schaffrick, 31.40
8. Kelly Marren, 29.40
9. Clair Bidez, 19.30
The official Olympic announcement isn't until Saturday night, but in addition to Shaun and Kelly who are locked in, Louie Vito, Hannah Teter, Gretchen Bleiler, and Scotty Lago are currently in a good place to possibly make the team after tonight (see below for overall standings). There's still one more night of competition and no one's claiming anything yet. We’ll find out which three women and three men are confirmed for pipe Saturday night, but we’ll have to wait until Monday for the remaining two to be announced.
Overall Standings—Average of best two results (ties broken)
1. Shaun White, Carlsbad, CA, 1000
2. Louie Vito, Sandy, UT, 800
3. Scotty Lago, Seabrook, NH, 700
4. JJ Thomas, Golden, CO, 550
5. Greg Bretz, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 525
6. Zack Black, Breckenridge, CO, 525
7. Elijah Teter, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 475
8. Luke Mitrani, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 475
9. Steve Fisher, Breckenridge, CO, 400
10. Jack Mitrani, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 340
1. Kelly Clark, Mt. Snow, VT, 1000
2. Gretchen Bleiler, Aspen, CO, 900
3. Hannah Teter, Belmont, VT, 800
4. Elena Hight, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 650
5. Ellery Hollingsworth, Stratton, VT, 600
6. Maddy Schaffrick, Steamboat Springs, CO, 475
7. Clair Bidez, Minturn, CO, 425
8. Kaitlyn Farrington, Sun Valley, ID, 400
9. Kelly Marren, Hillsborough, CA, 305
Illustrations by John Antoski