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McMorris, Anderson top qualifiers in U.S. Open slopestyle event at Vail

March 7, 2018, 5:49 pm

Canada’s Mark McMorris was the top qualifier Wednesday at the Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships in Vail (US Open photo).

Riders were treated to absolutely perfect conditions Wednesay at Vail Mountain Resort for the 36th annual Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships slopestyle semi-finals. Jamie Anderson (USA) and Mark McMorris (CAN) earned the top scores in the two-run semi-finals leading the field of six women and 10 men advancing to Friday’s slopestyle finals for a shot at the coveted Burton U.S. Open title.

 The heavily contested men’s field was systematically narrowed down in front of a crowd of sun-soaked spectators with the top 10 advancing men putting down clean, highly-technical runs with zero room for error. Defending U.S. Open slopestyle champion Mark McMorris earned the top score of 83.85 on his second run, strategically bumping up from sixth place to first.

McMorris hammered through the upper rail section with a switch boardslide 270 melon out on the third rail, followed by a massive backside triple cork 1440 Indy on the last of the trio of lower jumps sealing his top score. Marcus Kleveland (NOR) took second place with a score of 82.3 on his first run landing a switch frontside double cork 1620 mute—the only landed 1620 of the day. Chris Corning (USA) took the third spot with a score of 82.25.

Five-time Burton U.S. Open slopestyle champion and two-time Olympic slopestyle gold medalist Jamie Anderson took the lead on her first run for a high score of 83.75. Her precision run included a boardslide to 270 out in the upper rail section, back-to-back 540s and a giant frontside 720 mute off the final jump.

“Today has been really fun,” said Anderson. “It’s actually the best course conditions of the season.”

Defending U.S. Open Champion Anna Gasser (AUT) grabbed second place with an 80.95. Her technical run included the creative use of a narrow takeoff in the upper rail section throwing a huge backside 180, plus a lofty backside 720 mute in the jump section. Julia Marino (USA) took the third spot earning a 75.85.

Competition continues Thursday, March 8, with the men’s and women’s halfpipe semi-finals on Vail’s Golden Peak with Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim (USA), two-time Olympic halfpipe silver medalist Ayumu Hirano (JPN), Olympic silver and bronze medalists Jiayu Liu (CHN) and Arielle Gold (USA), 2017 X Games gold medalist Scotty James (AUS), Ben Ferguson (USA), Yuto Tatsuka (JPN) and Chase Josey (USA) among others competing to earn a spot in Saturday’s halfpipe finals.

Wednesday night starting at 6:00 pm MST, check out the Junior Jam Awards and Olympic Rider Welcome on the Solaris Concert Stage, followed by the Burton Concert Series featuring Dangermuffin and Monophonics. Also join The Chill Foundation at the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum in Vail Village at8:30pm MST for a fundraising celebration of Chill.

Women’s Slopestyle Semi-Finals Results

  1. Jamie Anderson (USA), OAKLEY, 83.75
  2. Anna Gasser (AUT), BURTON, 80.95
  3. Julia Marino (USA), MOUNTAIN DEW, 75.85
  4. Kokomo Murase (JPN), BURTON, 75.30
  5. Klaudia Medlova (SVK), GIRO, 75.00
  6. Silje Norendal (NOR), ROCKSTAR, 74.75

Men’s Slopestyle Semi-Finals Results

  1. Mark McMorris (CAN), BURTON, 83.85
  2. Marcus Kleveland (NOR), RED BULL, 82.30
  3. Chris Corning (USA), ROCKSTAR, 82.25
  4. Yuki Kadono (JPN), RIDE, 81.60
  5. Takeru Otsuka (JPN), BURTON, 81.35
  6. Fridtjof Tischendorf (NOR), LOBSTER, 80.30
  7. Staale Sandbech (NOR), OAKLEY, 78.15
  8. Roope Tonteri (FIN), BURTON, 78.10
  9. Tyler Nicholson (CAN), ROCKSTAR, 78.00
  10. Nikolas Baden (USA), ADIDAS, 77.75

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