David Wise Wins Winter Dew Tour Superpipe, Rolland Takes Dew Cup
Men's superpipe podium (l-r): Kevin Rolland, David Wise, Torin Yater-Wallace
Well folks, we've got another streak on our hands, and perhaps the makings of new dynasty? David Wise has won his second straight superpipe event (the first being X Games) and has everyone wondering, if anyone can beat him right now. The Reno-native (and yesterday's top qualifier) had his way with the superpipe tonight, taking the top spot on his first run and never letting go. Kevin Rolland took second honors tonight, also edging out young Yater-Wallace for the Dew Cup title. Speaking of that Torin guy, he took third place, snagging his second consecutive Dew Tour podium.
David seemed untouchable tonight. Where everyone else had bobbles, he was perfect. Where everyone was boosting, he was floating a little higher. And when everyone else came up a little short, he was left standing. The 21-year-old went massive on every hit starting with this switch double 1080. He then dropped into two giant back-to-back 900s, which segued into his floaty alley-oop flatpsin 540 blunt. He capped it all off with a large double cork 1260 (he went for the double cork 1440 on his second run, but crashed). Tonight David was the complete package of big air, technical trickery, stylish form and solid landings.
David Wise takes his flatspin to the moon.
Kevin, who was sitting well outside the podium after his first run crash, did what he does best: thrive under pressure. The frenchman's switch 900, switch right 720, back-to-back double flip 900s and double cork 1260 were impressive, and enough to snag second place for the evening and first in the overall race to the Dew Cup. "This feels really great especially because I didn't win at the last Dew Tour stop,” said Rolland. “So there was a little bit of trouble in my mind. I tried to do my best and get the Dew Cup.”
The young Torin Yater-Wallace, ceases to amaze, grabbing third on his final run, after losing a shoe on his first run. The 16-year-old's run looked like this: big double cork 1260, alley-oop double flatspin 900, double flip 900, left 1080, switch 900. Despite being knocked out of the Dew Cup race by Kevin, Torin's second place standing is the highest he's ever finished. Tonight's finish bring's Torin's Dew Cup trophy count to two.
Simon Dumont doubling down on his 1260.
Finishing just off the podium was pipe legend Simon Dumont, however his performance was inspiring, as the Dumont has seemingly been a non-factor in many events this year. The amplitude that we've come to know from Simon returned, as did the high-risk, high-reward tricks. Double cork 1260, right 900, double flare 900, alley-oop 720, switch 720 and alley-oop 540 got him to within a point of the podium, not bad for a night's work. Thomas Krief, one of the dark horses of every competition, skied extremely well, used a couple double flips (double 1260 and double alley-oop flatspin 900) to finish a mere point behind Dumont in the standings.
AJ Kemppainen, who has been sidelined much of the past year with a back injury suffered in Snowbasin in 2011, returned to his extravagant self tonight. It's no secret that AJ's right and left spins are a thing of beauty, and he's added both left and right double flares to his repertoire. Kudos to AJ and it's great to see him back in the saddle. Mike Riddle, who voluntarily pulled out of the Killington Dew Tour, managed to run his safer run (safer being 900, right 900, double flare 900, alley-oop flatspin 360, switch 900, switch right900), but went down on his double cork 1260 on the first hit of his second run.
Torin "tater tot" Yater-Wallace getting tricky with a double cork 1260.
Tucker Perkins, a Dew trophy holder, skied his solid self, put down left and right spins like it was no big deal. He also added a new trick to his arsenal, the alley-oop double flatspin 900. While the trick is impressive in and of itself, Tucker was running out of pipe when he executed both times, and it could—and will— be cleaner in the future. Jossi Wells, who has been held out of every major pipe final this year, managed a nice top nine finish tonight. The Kiwi's signature smooth style was on display tonight, with his marquee being the right side 720 to giant switch 720. Jossi couldn't hold on to his second run, nipping whatever upgrade he had in the works.
Gus Kenworthy, one of the hardest working skiers in the game, rounded out the top 10. Spinning like a top is no problem for Kenny G, but it was his double flatspin 1080 that got the crowd riled up. The only competitor in the field to do the trick, the pipe skiers better watch out for Gus, who is quickly becoming a threat every weekend. Matt Margetts couldn't get a clean run tonight, going down on his alley-oop double flatspin 720s both runs, but pleased the crowd with some large amplitude before hand. And Benoit Valentin, the next in the long line of French pipe skiers, went down both runs, ending his bid for a podium position. He almost had it run one, but fell on his last hit double cork 1260 and couldn't hang on to his alley-oop flatspin 360 on his second.
Gus Kenworthy gettin' blunted.
Prior to the start of the event, Kevin Rolland held a minuscule four point lead over Yater-Wallace for the overall Dew Cup title. With both competitors outside the top six after run one, the math was getting complicated on who could take the cup. But in the end, the Frenchman Rolland put it down, edging the Aspenite out by a quarter of a point. But that quarter point allowed Rolland the margin he needed to take his second consecutive Dew Cup.
L: Tonight's winner David Wise, R: Superpipe Dew Cup winner, Kevin Rolland
Under the lights tonight, the Snowbasin visitors were treated to an amazing contest, with the top five guys all breaking the 90s, separated by a mere three and three quarters points. But as the lights fade on the Superpipe tonight, the focus shifts to the slopestyle men and women and their shot at glory tomorrow. With Tom Wallisch holding a sizable margin over Nick Goepper, many are betting on Tom to take the Cup. Tom also is riding a three contest win streak into the event. All eyes will be on the slopestyle course, so stay tuned.
Men's Superpipe Finals:
1_ David Wise – 94.50
2_ Kevin Rolland – 93.00
3_ Torin Yater-Wallace – 92.75
4_ Simon Dumont – 91.75
5_ Thomas Krief – 90.75
6_ AJ Kemppainen – 86.25
7_ Mike Riddle – 83.75
8_ Tucker Perkins – 78.00
9_ Josiah Wells – 76.75
10_ Gus Kenworthy – 75.00
11_ Matt Margetts – 40.00
12_ Benoit Valentin – 29.75
Men's Dew Cup Final Standings:
1_ Kevin Rolland – 307
2_ Torin Yater-Wallace – 291
3_ David Wise – 266
4_ Tucker Perkins – 244
5_ Gus Kenworthy – 206
6_ Thomas Krief – 191
7_ Simon Dumont – 172
8_ Justin Dorey – 166
9_ Matt Margetts – 155
10_ Duncan Adams – 142
With the conclusion of Dew, the AFP saw a few shakeups in its top 10 overall standings. Torin yater-Wallace has overtaken David Wise for the top spot, pushing the Snowbasin winner down to second. But a mere 140+ points separates them (and a bad showing at Breck for David). Look for that to be a tight race. Mr. Consistent Tucker Perkins sits in third currently, a nice bump from sixth. Gus drops a spot to fourth and Wing Tai Barrymore sits in fifth, but should continute to drop as a dual-ACL injury has cut his season short.
Kevin Rolland has bumped up from eleventh to sixth, and holds an event in hand. Simon Dumont also had an event in hand, as he's currently sitting in 13th. Look for both guys to bump up at either the Grand Prix or Euro X. Despite a poor showing here, Noah Bowman has bumped up to seventh, cededing the eigth spot to Mike Riddle. Guys who have had injuries derail their seasons, AJ Kemppainen, Justin Dorey and Duncan Adams, are sitting in 20th, 21st and 26th, respectively, but look for them to stand making moves up the standings soon as AJ has two poor showings to overcome, and Justin and Duncan both has two events in hand. For the full story on what's happening in the pipe rankings, visit the AFP Superpipe Rankings page.
Matt Margetts amidst a down the pipe flatspin 540
About the author:
Shay Williams is the former Managing Editor of Freeskier Magazine. He now works full-time with Monster Energy, and continues to contribute to freeskier.com, offering insights re: the lives of his Monster athletes.