Scandinavians drop hammers at PyeongChang slopestyle World Cup

18 February 2016 10:35
Skiers like Evan McEachran (CAN) who sneaked into the finals as fifth best qualifier of his heat went 'through the fence' at the slopestyle World Cup test event for PyeongChang 2018
Skiers like Evan McEachran (CAN) who sneaked into the finals as fifth best qualifier of his heat went 'through the fence' at the slopestyle World Cup test event for PyeongChang 2018 -
Oliver Kraus

Athletes from Norway and Sweden have switched into Viking mode in today's qualifiers to earn the top spots for the finals of the Olympic test event slopestyle World Cup currently staged at Bokwang Phoenix Park.

While Tiril Sjaastad Christiansen (NOR) stood out in the women's event, her teammate Felix Stridsberg-Usterud and Jesper Tjader (SWE) rocked their respective heats in the men's competition.

Tiril Sjaastad Christiansen (NOR) ruled the women's qualifiers at the slopestyle World Cup test event for PyeongChang 2018

Sjaastad Christiansen a class of her own

Sjaastad Christiansen (NOR) not only shocked the world's best by claiming the high score of 90.40 in her first run right away but also by bringing down the second best score of 85.40 with her second attempt.

The 20-year-old who had triumphed in this season's opener down under kept the momentum from her third rank finish at the Boston big air event from last weekend impressing the judges with some well-executed technical rail tricks including a k-fed on the kink rail.

In addition, the Geilo native was one of only a handful girls going on the big plastic tube which is centred in the third section.

Solid grabs on the jumps and some good combinations with left, right and switch tricks made her the top favourite going into Saturday's finals.

However, Sjaastad Christiansen cannot feel to safe as runner-up Katie Summerhayes (GBR, 82.20) also stood out with her front 450 on the second kink feature, a trick which no other girl threw down.

If the 2015 world champs silver medallist manages to step up her game and stays consistent with the variety of her grabs, she should be a major threat for the win.

Felix Stridsberg-Usterud (NOR) impressed with his clean run at the slopestyle World Cup test event for PyeongChang 2018

Stridsberg-Usterud does it in impressive fashion

In the first heat of the men's qualifiers, Tiril's fellow countryman Felix Stridsberg-Usterud (NOR) also raised the bar too high for his competitors earning 90.80 for his first run.

The reigning Norwegian champion performed super clean from top to bottom, with no mistakes at all, starting well on the rails and keeping the level high going into the jumps with a clean switch right double 1080 to back-to-back double 1260s.

His teammate Oystein Braaten sneaked into second with 88.80 for his second run which he had kicked off with a switch left 270 on-450 out before adding a fun and dope second section including a huge transfer.

The younger brother of snowboarder Gjermund then finished his run with a switch right double 1080 in to a clean switch left double 1260 and a left double 1080 looking strong for the men's finals.

Jesper Tjader (SWE) going upside down at the slopestyle World Cup test event for PyeongChang 2018

Tjader kills it in his first run

The showdown of the top-10 men will also feature the likes of Jesper Tjader (SWE) and Mcrae Williams (USA).

Tjader took advantage of the creative course which was designed by Schneestern being the only one using the first far left rail with has the big drop off at the end as wallride by flatspin flipping off the rail.

After some more fun tricks in his flowy jibbing section he nailed it on the three-kicker line with a 'blender' switch rightside take-off into a switch double cork 1080 and a 'carving' rightside double cork 1260 to finish things off topping the qualifier results with 92.00.

Mcrae Williams of the US of A landed one of the most technical rail runs including the possibly best trick of the comp: a big transfer switch leftside 450 gap to rail.

Staying clean in his difficult kicker tricks including a switch right double 1080 japan and a switch left double cork 1260 safety he locked in 91.00 in his first run.

The best-ranked skier from North America therefore seems to keep the momentum from his second World Cup podium finishes achieved at the Mammoth Mountain GP a few weeks ago as the 25-year-old decided to skip his second run thanks to the massive boost of the self-confidence gained from his first attempt.

Full results can be viewed online:


Finals are scheduled for Saturday, February 20th, 1 PM local time (5 AM CET). 


TV Schedule

ASIA

EUROSPORT

same-day delayed on Eurosport1 Asia at h. 16:30 + rerun on 21/02 h. 1:30

EUROPE

EUROSPORT

same-day delayed on Eurosport2 h. 9:30 + rerun h. 18:30

CANADA

CBC

live streaming on www.cbc.ca

CHINA

CCTV

delayed highlights on CCTV5+ on 22/02 h. 22:45

FRANCE (+ DOM TOM, BELGIUM, LUXEMBOURG, PORTUGAL, SUB SAHARA)

MCS

live on MCS Extreme at h. 5:00 + rerun h. 10:45

ITALY

RAI

time and date to be confirmed

NORWAY

NRK

same-day delayed on NRK1 h. 8:50

USA

NBC

live streaming on NBC Sports/Live Extra Streaming h. 11:00pm (19/02)