After an insane Big Air contest yesterday afternoon and the first gold of what is sure to be many for Eileen Gu in the halfpipe last night, Saturday saw the women switch to slopestyle mode. Only 5 of the ladies made it to the start gate after injuries to Kelly Sildaru and Giulia Tanno among others which meant a rapid-fire 20 minutes jam session. The format this weekend is the best single run from the session decides your rank. There are no published numerical scores, simply a ranking from 1 to 5.
As with Big Air last night, the light was flat and speed hard to come by. The conditions did not look fun to have to ride a pretty gnarly course in.
Megan Oldham, Isabel Atkin, and Eileen Gu all put down clean runs early on to set the bar, with Eileen's 450 disaster on the flat down and switch bio 9 the highlights, giving her an early lead. Mathilde Gremaud didn't quite have the speed to put down her jumps, with Sarah Hoefflin suffering the same fate, and also somehow saving what looked like certain death on the first of two shark fins.
The second run-through of the order saw Isabel Atkin tidy up her run a little but she still landed slightly back seat on a cork 7 from the first shark fin which kept her 2nd. She had a dope switch 2 pretz 2, and all 4 ways spins though. Eileen Gu put it down clean again and solidified her lead, with Mathilde and Sarah both having issues again.
Run 3 saw Megan throw a dope switch 9 from the first shark fin but two 360s on the jumps because of speed issues killed her chances of a win, keeping her third. Eileen's early dominance and the speed issues throughout seemed to make the result inevitable, and so it proved. Mathilde couldn't get her trick dialed on that same rail which put her out of contention. Sarah put down her final run but it was clearly not enough to challenge Eileen, despite a dope switch 2 continuing 2 on the donkey dick rail up top.
That left Eileen Gu with a third medal, and a second gold, within the space of 36 hours or so. Not a bad X Games debut. On the final run, Isabel Atkin took a horrible crash on the disaster rail, missing her takeoff on a switch 270 catching her ski under the rail and hitting her head hard. She wasn't moving for some time and had to be stretchered off the course. She takes home the silver medal, but more importantly, our thoughts are with her and we hope she is ok.
1st Place - Eileen Gu
2nd Place - Isabel Atkin
3rd Place - Megan Oldham