By Ben Gavelda

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday was the final showdown as the Superpipe contest rounded out the weekend’s events for the 2008 Vans Tahoe Cup.  The sunny Sierras created a picture perfect setting for the last bout and run for cash.  Cooler spring temps kept the pipe fast and sent riders soaring above the deck.  The ladies took charge of the day with big hitters Kjersti Buaas and Molly Aguirre stealing the contest spotlight.  Kjersti was keeping the crowd happy and impressing the judges with lofty inverted sevens.  Aguirre was hard charging out of the gate with big backside airs, laying down solid runs.  All this flying high also plunked her down for a stiff landing, where she injured her foot and had to wait out the last run of the contest.  After three runs the podium was sealed with Meg Pugh placing in the number five spot.  Aguirre’s first run held onto the fourth position, and the high-flying Norwegian Buass claiming third.  Second place went to Lizzy Beerman, who milked the most consistent hits out of the pipe.  And finally, the big money went to the young defending champ Elena Height.  Elena sealed the deal with back-to-back fives linked with a seven and some of the biggest airs of the day.  Congrats girl.

The guys were slinging high out of the snow tube and spinning for cash.  The top three big hits of the day from last to first went to Steve Fisher, Danny Kass, and Andy Finch for blasting double-digit heights.  Fisher had consistent runs through qualifiers yet came down tough for a deck bonk and trip to the pipe infirmary alongside Molly Aguirre and Michael Goldschmidt.  The crowd-captivating Finch went soaring with spins close to twenty feet out.  Finch’s airtime tactics edged out yesterday’s second place slopestyle ripper Mason Aguirre for fourth place.  Iouri “Ipod” Podlatchikov was catching eyes and throwing insane combos down the pipe.  “Ipod” linked up a third place position with tip grabbin’ 1080 combos.  With all the boys slapping down good runs, the final judging was tricky. Louie Vito locked down a plethora of spinning with back-to-back tens and nines.  Louie’s smooth pipe style plopped him into second place and added a nice bulge to his already swelled contest winnings.  Pipe slayer Danny Kass wasn’t about to give away his Tahoe Cup title and charged it with signature DK style.  Kass flipped work with big air to fakies into 1080 and 900 combos that defended his number one position for the second year in a row.  Big ups to Steve Van Doran and the rest of the Vans crew for putting up one of the biggest contests on the West Coast.

Women’s Superpipe Results:
1.    Elena Height
2.    Lizzy Beerman
3.    Kjersti Buaas
4.    Molly Aguirre
5.    Meg Pugh

Protec Slam Award – Steve Fisher

Big Hit of the Day
1.    Andy Finch
2.    Danny Kass
3.    Steve Fisher
Men’s Superpipe Results:
1.    Danny Kass
2.    Louie Vito
3.    Iouri Podlatchikov
4.    Andy Finch
5.    Mason Aguirre