The European X Games are in full-force across the ski slopes of Tignes, France. The competition is fierce as always, but with spring like conditions, world-class course designs and thousands of excited spectators — fun was the name of the game! The most elite names in freeskiing came out to compete in slopestyle event with the hopes of earning their place on the coveted podium of the Euro X Games, Europe’s only AFP Platinum Level slopestyle event.
Bobby Brown took the European X Games gold with a stellar slopestyle run that showcased his technical ability and consistency. Tom Wallisch — the most winningest freeski athlete this season — followed close in second with multiple rotations and challenging rail combos. Norwegian Andreas Håtveit rounded out the podium in third place with an inspiring run that displayed his veteran skill level.
“Between Tom’s and my runs the scores could have gone first or second really easily and the judges gave it to me this time. He’s had an amazing season and to end with another second place is pretty unreal,” said Brown.
This is Bobby’s third podium this season, but the first time he was finally able to break through to take the top spot! He took the title thanks to an incredible second run that gave Wallisch a run for his money on the rails. Brown had great execution and variation throughout his entire run which featured a switch 270 gap to down pretzel 270 out, switch on 450 off, frontside side surface switch up to backside 270 out, right double cork 1080 high mute grab, left double cork 1260 revert tail grab, switch left double cork 1260 mute grab, and sealed the deal with a misty 450 Japan grab over the gap rail.
Check out the winning run:
Bobby went on to describe what made his run work, explaining, “The course was super cool with three jumps and ending with a rail, it usually doesn’t happen like that, to change it up and make it unique. I like hitting jumps and Tom is amazing at hitting jumps and even better at rails. This course tailored to what I like, big jumps!”
Tom Wallisch also earned his podium spot through his second run, which featured a switch on backside switch up to 630 out, frontside 270 out, switch lip slide 270 on to 270 out, leftside double cork 1260 high mute grab to switch right side double rodeo 1080 Japan grab, to switch left double rodeo 1080 Japan grab, and a switch 270 on pretzel 630 out. Unfortunately for Wallish, his execution was not as precise as Brown’s 95.00 run and it earned him a score of 93.33.
Wallisch graciously accepted second place, saying, “It was amazing to watch Bobby. Every slopestyle contest Bobby is somebody that I worry about and I know he is going to be throwing it down hard. I have been getting lucky this season with good courses that have worked out in my favor. Just watching Bobby today, he laid three runs down today that all scored higher than my second place run, he was just on fire! He was doing everything he set out to do and it was awesome to watch. He deserved it and it’s great to see him on top of the podium and I am glad to be there with him and Andreas.”
Håtveit went all out with a super technical run which included a frontside 360 switch up, 450 out of the up rail to switch butter 270, rightside double cork 1260 mute grab, a switch 1260 double cork safety grab, into a leftside double cork 1080 mute, finishing off with a 50-50 to 270 out!
“I had the best couple of runs of my life,” said the ecstatic Norwegian “I ended up with the Bronze and I couldn’t be more stoked!”
Håtveit has a lot to be excited about. Not only did he podium after being the last athlete to qualify for finals during yesterday’s elimination round, but the 25 year old skier is set to welcome a new baby!
Notable mentions go to Nick Goepper who came in sixth with an 88.33 and Joss Christensen who followed in seventh with an 86.3.
Next up for the freeskiers is tomorrow evening’s men’s and women’s final halfpipe competition.