Words & photos by Ananda van Welij
After the men kicked off European X Games in Tignes, France this morning with Slopestyle Elimination, at 1:30pm it was the ladies’ turn with Women’s Ski Slopestyle Finals. By the time practice started at Noon the sun had come over the mountain completely, making the snow and therefore the in-runs a lot softer. But as one would expect at an event like this, the shapers were on it, and spent some time smoothing and salting everything to make sure the girls could go all out.
The ladies ready to start.
At the beginning of the event the start list seemed to be set, until Emma Dahlström had to drop out last minute due to back pains, which caused Tiril Sjåstad Christiansen to get the nod as the youngest of the riders. But she wasn't the youngest girl riding the course today. Kelly Sildaru has been practicing on the course over the last few days and showing even more than we already knew that she's one to watch out for in the future.
Tiril Christiansen getting a last minute spot.
Kelly Sildaru practicing on the course.
After the ladies got warmed up and the crowd their sunscreen on, the event was underway. As you may already have read, the riders are all extremely happy with the course, and this translated into some really good riding from the girls.
Although Keri Herman had some trouble with her back at the beginning of the season, she's rocking now.
In the first round, scores stayed under the 90's until Kaya Turski managed to take the lead with a 90.66, knocking Anna Segal out of the top spot. But just like the men’s event, things weren't set in stone, as following the first run the girls were feeling confident and ready to throw down. Devin Logan had already scored an 88 on her first run, and excitement began to rise as she was halfway through her second. She unfortunately wasn't able to land all of her jumps though, and her second run score landed her the fourth place in the end.
Devin Logan putting down a solid second run.
In third place today, earning her first big podium finish, was Dara Howell, who surprised the ones who haven't seen her ski yet, while confirming that she's one to watch for those who have. Taking second was Anna Segal, who has been a regular resident on X Games podiums over the years, and much to her delight, she’s now got another shiny medal to add to her trophy case.
Dara Howell, mid-flatspin 5.
Anna Segal, elated after her silver medal performance.
In the end though, it was Kaya Turski's second run that got her the gold today. With a run that consisted of a switch 450 on to the first rail feature and a switch right side 720 on the last jump and a comment at the press conference that she's excited to start working on more corks and bigger spins, it's clear that she is not done yet and has more things to show us in the future.
Kaya getting congratulated by the other girls
1) Kaya Turski - 92.66
2) Anna Segal - 91.00
3) Dara Howell - 89.66
4) Devin Logan - 88.00
5) Emilia Wint - 87.00
6) Eveline Bhend - 84.33
7) Ashley Battersby - 81.33
8) Keri Hermann - 78.00
9) Rose Battersby - 77.33
10) Tiril Sjåstad Christiansen - 68.00
To see how this event affects the AFP World Rankings, go to afpworldtour.com.
Anna Segal (2nd), Kaya Turski (1st), Dara Howell (3rd)
Stay tuned for more coverage on European X Games (including additional videos from today’s events), which continues tomorrow with Men's Ski Slopestyle Finals and Men's Ski Superpipe Elimination. Click here for a look at the competition schedule, and click here to see when and where you can watch European X Games on TV.