Women's and men's podium of Olympic test event big air World Cup staged at Alpensia Ski Stadium in South Korea on Nov 26, 2016 shows (L to R): Ryan Stassel (USA) 3rd, Max Parrot (CAN) 2nd, Mark McMorris (CAN) 1st, Anna Gasser (AUT) 1st, Julia Marino (USA) 2nd and Katie Ormerod (GBR) 3rd. (photo: LOC)

Gasser and McMorris Win Olympic Big Air Test Event

PyeongChang, South Korea – Austrian snowboarder Anna Gasser and Canada’s Mark McMorris celebrated impressive wins on Saturday at this season’s second big air World Cup competition, staged at Alpensia Ski Stadium as an Olympic Test Event for PyeongChang 2018.

On a huge scaffolding ramp constructed right across from the Olympic ski jumping hills, Gasser was able to maintain her momentum from her triumph at Milan, Italy two weeks ago. Gasser earned a total score of 180.75 and a dominant lead over second and third place riders Julia Marino, of Westport, Conn. (USA, 157.00) and Katie Ormerod (GBR, 156.75).

“It’s nice to win the Olympic rehearsal,” said Gasser. “It’s a great thing and it gives me a real boost of self-confidence aiming for PyeongChang 2018.”

Gasser, the top qualifier among Saturday’s six female finalists and the current big air World Cup leader, established her dominance in the first two of her three runs by executing a cab double cork 900 and backside 720 mute, respectively. With only the best two out of three runs counting, she was able to enjoy a victory lap in her third run with a stylish frontside 360 nosebone.

“I’m really happy, that I landed my first tricks, and I was able to try the cab 1080 for the first time in competition,” added Ormerod.

Women's and men's podium of Olympic test event big air World Cup staged at Alpensia Ski Stadium in South Korea on Nov 26, 2016 shows (L to R): Ryan Stassel (USA) 3rd, Max Parrot (CAN) 2nd, Mark McMorris (CAN) 1st, Anna Gasser (AUT) 1st, Julia Marino (USA) 2nd and Katie Ormerod (GBR) 3rd. (photo: LOC)
Women’s and men’s podium of Olympic test event big air World Cup staged at Alpensia Ski Stadium in South Korea on Nov 26, 2016 shows (L to R): Ryan Stassel (USA) 3rd, Max Parrot (CAN) 2nd, Mark McMorris (CAN) 1st, Anna Gasser (AUT) 1st, Julia Marino (USA) 2nd and Katie Ormerod (GBR) 3rd. (photo: LOC)

On the men’s side, however, McMorris had to up the ante in the last round of the finals of the top ten men to claim his career’s second World Cup win, and his first in a big air competition. After finishing third in Milan, the 22-year-old was the only one to stomp a frontside triple cork 1440 mute to earn a final score of 184.75, edging out his Canadian teammate Max Parrot (178.00) to take over the World Cup lead despite Parrot completing the first cab triple cork 1620 ever landed from a scaffolding jump. Reigning slopestyle world champion Ryan Stassel (USA) finished third.

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“I feel awesome. It feels good to land that trick [frontside triple 14],” said a relieved McMorris. “That was the trick I broke my femur on, and I haven’t tried this trick ever since. It’s a big mental thing for me to having overcome this. And being first is the icing on the cake.”

Parrot, however, was not disappointed to finish behind his teammate. “I’m feeling really great to get second. I represented the number of my bib pretty good,” he said. “And I’m also happy to land a new trick on a scaffolding jump [cab triple cork 1620]. I have been trying this trick for a long time, and I finally got it. So yeah, I’m happy.”

Stassel goes big during the qualifying round at Alpensia Ski Jumping Center in South Korea. (photo: Getty Images-Han Myung-Gu)
Stassel goes big during the qualifying round at Alpensia Ski Jumping Center in South Korea. (photo: Getty Images-Han Myung-Gu)

“I feel good, I landed what I could,” added Stassel, of Anchorage, Alaska, who was likewise content with his third-place result. “I’m happy with how I did. Ending up on the podium is really nice.”

With two podium results, U.S. Snowboarding Head Coach Mike Jankowski was pleased. “We are fortunate to have a U.S. team full of such bold, courageous and talented riders,” he said. “Momentum is on our side as we transition into our Olympic prep season and the team is ready to keep charging ahead towards 2018.”

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The big air World Cup tour continues this weekend at the ARAG Big Air Freestyle Festival in Moenchengladbach, Germany.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
FIS Snowboard World Cup

PyeongChang, South Korea – Nov. 26, 2016
Snowboard Big Air (Olympic Test Event)

Women
Rank NATION Name Tot. Points WC Points
1 AUT GASSER Anna 180.75 1000
2 USA MARINO Julia 157.00 800
3 GBR ORMEROD Katie 156.75 600
4 USA LANGLAND Hailey 150.75 500
5 USA ANDERSON Jamie 124.25 450
6 FRA MAAS Cheryl 105.00 400
7 JPN ONITSUKA Miyabi 83.50 360
8 SVK MEDLOVA Klaudia 82.75 320
9 CAN VOIGT Brooke 78.25 290
10 CAN O BRIEN Spencer 75.00 260
Men
Rank NATION Name Tot. Points WC Points
1 CAN MCMORRIS Mark 184.75 1000
2 CAN PARROT Max 178.00 800
3 USA STASSEL Ryan 177.25 600
4 CAN NICHOLSON Tyler 171.00 500
5 USA CORNING Chris 165.75 450
6 GBR MORGAN Billy 155.75 400
7 CAN TOUTANT Sebastien 152.50 360
8 GBR COULTAS Rowan 149.50 320
9 USA GERARD Redmond 141.75 290
10 CAN SHARPE Darcy 122.25 260

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