Words by Andrew J. Hogue / Photography by Aaron Blatt
Mother Nature can be a cold mistress. For those not riding today, it was a constant struggle to stay warm. For those who were, it was all about staying safe amidst sub zero temperatures and fifty mile per hour gusts. The semi-finals are now a wrap, but the weather claimed its victims. Ipod, and Lago went down yesterday, and thankfully, it won't keep them from Winter X next week. However, Brock Waring sustained a concussion after bottoming out on the pipe today. In the end, Matt Ladley took first in the pipe, while Eric Willet locked up the slope. What should have been a warm up for Winter X has turned into a beast of its own. In light of the East Coast drought this winter, we gotta give a shout out to Killington's amazing crew for making this happen. Now, the finals are here and with cash on the line: its time to drop the hammer. Let's hope weather permits.
In the pipe, Ladley qualified first. Close in pursuit was Luke Mitrani, Roger Kleivdal, and Danny Davis, who placed in the top four respectively. With the Dew Cup in hand, the only rider that didn't have to bare the cold was Louie Vito and he was still there to show his support. With Mason Aguirre and Jack Mitrani in the mix, the finals are going to be a contest amongst Frends and close relatives. Due to the weather, the riders kept it pretty low key during the semis. Yet, you can tell they are ready to rip and the stage is set. Tomorrow will be time to fly.
In slopestyle, Eric Willet double cork 1080'ed his way into the top spot, while Staale Sandbech, and Aleksander Ostreng filled out the top three. After placing in the top three at Breck, Gjermund Braaten, Sebastien Toutant, and Charles Reid hold golden tickets, so they will be joining in the fun as well.
|SNB SUPERPIPE MEN SEMI-FINAL|
|SNB SLOPESTYLE MEN SEMI-FINAL|