Down to his final jump to make something happen, Torstein Horgmo of Norway saved the best for last, pulling off a switch backside triple cork 1440–a trick he only tried last week–and winning the gold medal in snowboard big air at X Games Aspen on Friday night.
The trick, the first ever landed in competition, earned Horgmo a perfect score of 50 points and, at the time, catapulted him into the lead past fellow countryman Stale Sandbech, who led for most of the final jam session.
Defending gold medalist Mark McMorris of Canada responded by nailing a cab triple underflip 1440, a trick nobody has ever landed in competition and one that McMorris had never tried before Friday night. His score of 48 tied him with Horgmo at 94 points, but Horgmo won via the tiebreaker, having had the highest score of 50.
Watch Horgmo nail his historic triple below:
“I can’t believe it,” Horgmo told ESPN. The 2012 big air silver medalist has won two gold medals previously. “I tried it [the switch backside triple cork 1440] a week ago and I thought I’d give it a shot here. Any of the other podiums I’ve been on ever, this was the best one for sure. This was the craziest level of riding that I’ve ever been a part of.”
It was a bit of tough luck for Sandbech, as Horgmo passed him for gold and McMorris overtook him for silver on the last round of jumps. But he was happy to settle for the bronze, based on the comment on his Facebook page: “Soooooo stoked on the Big Air and my first X Games medal!!!”
Top photo and video of Torstein Horgmo courtesy of ESPN
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