Orage athletes Xavier Bertoni, Kaya Turski, Banks Gilberti, Anais Caradeux, Matt Margetts, Taylor Seaton and newcomer Benoit Valentin all arrived last night in Tignes, France for the first ever ESPN Winter X Games Europe.
Ben Valentin - the newest addition to the Orage team
Anais CaradeuxAfter the unfortunate weather at the European Open in Laax last week nobody was too excited when this mornings forcast called for temps around -17C, but as soon as the sun came out things changed by about 20 degrees and the first day of practice got underway under bluebird skys and perfect early spring conditions.
Xavier Bertoni or Banks Gilberti
Banks Gilberti or Xavier BertoniFor no reason what-so-ever Xavier and Banks decided to show up at pipe practice both wearing white boots, black helmets, and the exact same outerwear.  Despite the similiar apparenance, their skiing is anything but. Banks was changing up his "normal" superpipe comp run from what we saw at X Games in Aspen a few weeks ago and is planning to start it out with a switch drop in.  Xavier lapped the pipe looking more and more comfortable as he caught perfect tranny on nearly every hit.
The village at Tignes Val Claret. The mountains here are breathtaking, as long as you don't miss the trees.Kevin Rolland and Simon Dumont were looking the strongest in the Tignes pipe so far; Simon going huge and Kevin stomping doubles.  With only one day of practice before tomorrows superpipe qualifier it may pay off for those that were stepping it up during this mornings session. Here's some raw footage from practice.... more to come! Skiing Superpipe Practice - Winter X Games Europe from Orage on Vimeo.Photos: Felix Rioux

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