ASPEN – Red Gerard led the American contingent in Friday’s men’s snowboard slopestyle final at the Aspen World Championships, but sneaking onto a star-studded podium that of the Norwegian Marcus Kleveland is led

Kleveland, a four-time X Games champion – including Aspen Big Air Gold just six weeks ago – nearly dropped out of the finals after injuring his leg in training

“I was just about to take an X-ray, but I wanted to do it. So I went back up and did the competition and I’m happy about it now,” said Kleveland But as soon as I got by I was no longer in pain and so focused on what I was going to do I’m so happy with the day ”

The final on Friday was a massive 16-man field compared to the 50+ who started Wednesday’s qualifying. With only two runs in the final to impress the judges, Kleveland wasted no time and scored 86 points86 on his first run which would have been enough to win the competition He didn’t stop there however 90 points66 on his second run, mainly by rotating his cabin (driving with the opposite foot forward and turning to the front of the board) 1440 degree turn on the last jump into a cabin 1620 (4 1/2 turns)

This was Kleveland’s first Slopestyle competition at Worlds He competed in the 2017 World Championships and won a large aerial bronze

Canadian veteran Sebastien Toutant won silver on Friday and scored 82 points53 on his first run. The 28-year-old is a two-time X Games champion and returned to his slopestyle win in 2011 However, this was the first time he took part in the World Cup

“The course was perfect The weather was perfect The guys killed it I finished second today,” said Toutant. “Every podium, it’s the best feeling ever to be on the podium again. I’m thrilled that I’m still in shape and I love snowboarding ”

Bronze went to Rene Rinnekangas from Finland, who like Kleveland is 21 years old and one of the most popular and talented young riders in the sport.Like so many of his age, he adored snowboarders like Toutant when he was growing up the 2018 Winter Olympics

“Snowboarding has never felt so good,” said Rinnekangas. “I’ve been watching Seb since I was a little kid and the same goes for Marcus even though we’re the same age. But if you just watch X Games, like he and Seb ride in X Games, it’s an incredible feeling to be on the podium with these guys ”

Gerard, the reigning Slopestyle Olympic champion from Silverthorne, was fourth with a first run of 82 points28 The Japanese Kaito Hamada was fifth (8023), Canada’s Max Parrot was sixth (78) 60) and the Californian Dusty Henricksen was seventh (77th) ) 90) Henricksen performed at X Games Aspen in January and won two gold medals as a rookie He became the first American to win the X Games Snowboard Slopestyle since Shaun White in 2009

Local pro snowboarder Chris Corning turned 11 (72) 41) and Hawaii’s Lyon Farrell was 12 (7063) Corning competed as the reigning world champion and won in 2019 after leading qualifying and the finals being canceled due to the weather

Californian Judd Henkes was the only American who did not reach the final this year. Among the big names who did not make the final was Canadian Mark McMorris, who has more X Games medals than any other winter athlete, though he missed this year’s X Games competition after a positive COVID-19 test, McMorris won silver at the Worlds in 2019, while Henkes was the reigning bronze medalist

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Rene Rinnekangas

World news – FI – The Norwegian Kleveland overcomes an injury and wins gold on the snowboard slope of the world championship

Source: https://www.summitdaily.com/news/norwegian-kleveland-overcomes-injury-to-win-world-champs-snowboard-slope-gold/