Kevin Rolland Wins King of Style Big Air [video]
Under the lights, the misty rain and cold temperatures, Frenchman Kevin Rolland has won the King of Style Big Air, here in Stockholm, Sweden. An ecstatic Kevin celebrates his first podium at a city big air event, while Big Air native Elias Ambühl takes second and backcountry jumping specialist Bene Mayr takes third. Yesterday, qualifiers culled a sizable field of hopefuls down to eight, who went on to meet today's pre-qualified field of eight in a bracket-style head-to-head showdown.
But unlike the London Freeze, this event implemented a one run format. A second caveat? Each rider could only do the same trick twice, meaning there would be no golden trick. With one practice jump each, the skiers took their places in the tournament lineup and here is how the first round went.
- Bene Mayr's double cork 1080 safety beat out Sammy Carlson's double 1080 mute.
- Elias Ambühl's gigantic double cork 1080 pushed him over Pal Bergeron's double cork 1080 tail.
- Jon Olsson's 360 was enough to beat out Fritdjof Fredricsson's double cork 1080, when his ski flew off mid-ar.
- Andreas Håtveit's double cork 1080 double mute to octo outdoes PK Hunder's double cork 1080.
After a couple crashes knocked out crowd favorite Bobby Brown and Norwegian youngster Fridtjof Fredriccson, the quarterfinals round got underway.
Round of 8:
-Elias Ambühl's double cork 1080 was more than enough to move on after TJ Schiller crashes a double cork 1260.
-Andreas Håtveit's double cork 1080 double mute to octo narrowly beats out Jacob Wester's double cork 1260.
With last year's King of Style out of the running, the showdown between Elias and Kevin was set to go. A consolation jump between Bene Mayr and Andreas Håtveit would take place to determine third place.
3rd place jump:
-Bene Mayr puts down an impressive double cork 1260 while Andreas Håtveit overrotates a switch 1260 and crashes. Bene takes 3rd.
-Elias Ambühl crashes his double cork 1260, giving Kevin the win if he stayed on his feet, which he did with a flatspin 360.
The reigning X Games Superpipe gold medalist infiltrated the big air scene tonight, winning with a combination of some luck and some determined jumping. As the swarm of media attacked the podium contenders, as the champagne sprayed over the newly crowned King of Style, Stockholm's residents were treated to a lively, action-packed and exciting big air tonight. See you next year Stockholm.
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.