In the men's competition, Olympic Slopestyle Gold Medalist Red Gerard (USA) came out on top in the field of 32 of the world's best slopestyle riders with a score of 84.75. He put down two clean runs, bettering his score on his second run with super technical and clean rail combinations up top including a boardslide 810 out. He took full advantage of the speed on the course putting down a switch backside 1260 mute, to frontside double cork 1080 Indy, and finishing with a backside triple cork 1440 mute.
Gerard said, "I'm psyched I made it to finals especially with such a heavy crew and all my buddies. I was super psyched on the course, it was one of the better courses I think we've ever ridden—the mandatory side hit [transition feature] is probably my favorite feature."
Newcomer Ruki Tobita (JPN) took second place with a score of 80.85 on his first run landing an incredible backside 1440 truckdriver on the final hit. Hiroaki Kunitake (JPN) followed with an 80.70 for third place. Defending Burton U·S·OPEN champion Mark McMorris (CAN) finished in eighth place to qualify for Friday's slopestyle finals.
In the women's competition, 2019 X Games Slopestyle Gold Medalist Zoi Sadowski Synnot earned the top score of 78.65. Her run linked up a switch backside 900 stalefish into a frontside 720 mute on the transitional feature—the first time she's combined these tricks in competition. Synnot says, "I just wanted to put something down smooth, which I did." Adding, "I'm definitely planning on stepping it up in finals because all the other girls are going to be stepping it up—we're going to see some crazy riding."
Julia Marino (USA) took second with a score of 77.05 throwing down a heavy Cab double cork 900 mute. Olympic Bronze Medalist Enni Rukajarvi (FIN) earned third place with a score of 72.25.
Competition continues Thursday, February 28th, with the men's and women's halfpipe semi-finals on Vail's Golden Peak with Olympic Gold Medalist Chloe Kim (USA), Olympic Silver and Bronze Medalists Jiayu Liu (CHN) and Arielle Gold (USA), 2019 X Games Gold Medalist Scotty James (AUS), X Games Silver Medalist Yuto Totsuka (JPN) and Bronze Medalist Danny Davis (USA); Ben Ferguson (USA), Raibu Katayama (JPN) and Toby Miller (USA) among others competing to earn a spot in Saturday's halfpipe finals.
Women's Slopestyle Semi-Finals Results
1. Zoi Sadowski Synnot (NZL), RED BULL, 78.65
2. Julia Marino (USA), BURTON, 77.05
3 Enni Rukajarvi (FIN), GIRO, 72.25
4. Miyabi Onitsuka (JPN), RED BULL, 70.60
5. Hailey Langland (USA), VOLCOM, 64.10
6. Annika Morgan (GER), GNU, 55.75
Men's Slopestyle Semi-Finals Results
1. Red Gerard (USA), MOUNTAIN DEW, 84.75
2. Ruki Tobita (JPN), VOLCOM, 80.85
3.Hiroaki Kunitake (JPN), NOBADAY, 80.70
4. Darcy Sharpe (CAN), MONSTER, 78.10
5. Staale Sandbech (NOR), OAKLEY, 77.35
6. Lyon Farrell (USA), US, 77.20
7. Luke Winkelmann (USA), BURTON, 75.85
8. Mark McMorris (CAN), BURTON, 73.55
9. Sven Thorgren (SWE), NITRO, 73.40
10. Brock Crouch (USA), RED BULL, 72.30