Sammy Carlson wins X Games 15 Men’s Slopestyle [video]
Sammy Carlson's winning run.
He's got an X Games silver. He's got an X Games bronze. And after today's slopestyle finals, Sammy Carlson now has a gold medal. As the sun was setting, the takeoffs were icing up and the light was flattening, Pasty C's first run was good enough to run the gauntly of seven other world class riders, emerging as the victorious run. Russ Henshaw, who in the words of ESPN correspondant John Symms put, "finally got the score [he] deserved, after being [redacted] all those other times." And then there was Andreas Håtveit, who like Sammy, now owns gold, silver and bronze X Games medals. The top three runs:
Sammy Carlson: Lip 270 on to the high box to rightside hand plant 360 on the lollipop to 450 on 630 out of the rainbow rail, corked 630 poke off the cannon box to rightside Kangaroo flip to switch double rodeo 900 to double cork 1080.
Russ Henshaw: 270 on 270 off the high box, switch 180 to lip 270 on the joystick down rail to blind 450 off the rainbow rail to corked 630 on the cannon box to double cork 1260 to switch double rodeo 900 to rightside double cork 1260.
Andreas Håtveit: 270 on the high box to lip 270 on the down rail to misty 450 off the rainbow rail to switch rightside 1080 to switch 900 to double cork 1080 octograb to rightside double cork 1260.
L-R: Russ Henshaw, Sammy Carlson, Andreas Håtveit
“This feels amazing,” said Sammy. “To win this event is my dream, my one dream in life and I did it. My whole family is here, it's just amazing."
Andreas Håtveit put down his medal winning run on his third and final attempt of the day, the only competitor to land a clean third attempt. In stark contrast to Andreas, Sammy and Russ both earned their 90s on their first runs, failing to upgrade their scores as the afternoon went on.
Russ Henshaw's silver medal run.
Sitting just outside of medal contention was last year's gold medalist, Bobby Brown. Brown, whose first run included a rightside double cork 1260 to switch double misty 1260 combination, couldn't put down a much improved run on the second or third attempt. Sitting just behind Brown was Sweden's Henrik Harlaut, who missed Winter X Games 14 due to a knee injury. E-Dollo didn't waste the opportunity to shine, by throwing a rigthside 900 to double cork 1260 to switch double rodeo 1080 jump line.
Gus Kenworthy's increadible switch right 1080.
Elias Ambühl only landed one run, but quite the doozy it was. While pundits argue his rail game is a bit bland, there is no denying his aerial skills were electric. The Swiss Ambühl dropped a double cork 1260 blunt to switch rightside double rodeo 1080 to switch double cork 1260.
Phil Casabon, who has finished fourth in the past two Winter X slopestyle events, couldn't keep the streak alive, landing in seventh place after being unable to stomp a clean run. A bit uncharacteristic of B-Dog, but today just wasn't his day. The second highest qualifier, Gus Kenworthy, couldn't put together a clean run, coming oh-so-close on his third attempt. Beautiful double cork 1080 to switch rightside double rodeo 1080 to switch double rodeo 1080 would have been a podium contender, had he stomped. Disappointing for Young Kenworthy, but he'll have an abundance of X Games chances in the future, with the way he's been riding lately.
Andreas Håtveit's bronze medal run.
Sammy Carlson has helped close the book on Winter X 15 slopestyle, by rounding out his medal collection with a long-awaited gold (this was his fourth X Games medal, he won a fifth later in the evening). Håtveit completed the medal-trifecta as well, while Russ Henshaw took his first X Games medal. ESPN Darling Bobby Brown unfortunately failed to medal (until later in the evening), yet showed brilliance that will be tough to compete with at later events.
Sammy Carlson warms up the lip 270.
As for the AFP rankings, Bobby's number one ranking will likely be in jeopardy with 2nd place holder Russ Henshaw and 3rd place holder Elias Ambühl will move on. Sammy Carlson inches towards that number one ranking while Phil Casabon and Andreas Håtveit will likely improve their situations. For complete rankings, visit the AFP World Rankings page.
Men's Slopestyle Results:
1. Sammy Carlson — 93.33
2. Russ Henshaw — 90.66
3. Andreas Håtveit — 90.00
4. Bobby Brown — 89.33
5. Henrik Harlaut — 86.33
6. Elias Ambühl — 74.66
7. Phil Casabon — 58.66
8. Gus Kenworthy — 49.66
Not that many people came out to watch men's slopestyle.
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.