Ferreira Becomes First Aspen Native to Win in Aspen in Nine Years; Cassie Sharpe Wins “Bucket List” X Games Gold; Laurie Blouin Wins Rookie X Games Appearance
X Games Aspen 2019 kicked off Thursday night in front of a crowd of 9,000 at Buttermilk mountain in Aspen Snowmass, Colorado. The 23rd edition of the X Games winter event, ESPN and Aspen Ski Company announced Wednesday that Aspen will remain home to X Games for five more years. Over the next four days, X Games Aspen will showcase the world’s best Ski, Snowboard, Snowmobile and Snow Bike athletes and world-class musicians.
Celebrating the fifth year of Special Olympics Unified Snowboarding at X Games Aspen, the team of Henry Meece and Chris Klug cemented their dominance with their fifth gold medal. In this slalom race, teams are composed of one X Games athlete and one Special Olympics athlete, with pros racing head-to-head before Special Olympic riders do the same. Juan Guentrutripai and Scotty Lago took second place and Christopher Perdue and Mike Schultz took third to earn their first Special Olympic Unified Snowboarding medals.
In the Jeep Men’s Ski Slopestyle Elimination, Alex Beaulieu-Marchand tied for the first position with a 93.66 on his first run. In The Real Cost Men’s Snowboard Big Air, Swedish rider Sven Thorgren took the top qualifying position ahead of X Games Norway 2018 gold medalist Takeru Otsuka with a combined best score of 76.00.
After winning everything – including Olympic gold – in 2018, Cassie Sharpe had one gold left to win: X Games Aspen. In the first competition of the night, the Canadian fulfilled her goal of winning her first X Games Aspen gold in Women’s Ski SuperPipe. Trailing Estonian phenom Kelly Sildaru heading into her final run, Sharpe overtook Sildaru with run that scored a 94.00. Her run included back-to-back 900s and a leftside 1080 on the last hit. Competing in three disciplines at X Games, Sildaru won her first-ever SuperPipe medal with a score of 92.33 for silver. Rookie Rachael Karker rounded out the podium to win bronze with an 86.33.
Much to the delight of his fifty friends and family and hometown crowd, Aspen native Alex Ferreira won his first X Games gold in Great Clips Men’s Ski SuperPipe. Ferreira took an early lead, and then bettered his score on his third run with a run that included a rightside double cork 1260, into a leftside double cork 1080 and his signature double flatspin on the final hit. This win was the first time in nine years that an Aspen native took home gold at X Games Aspen. Last year’s gold medalist David Wise couldn’t best Ferreira with his final run, settling for silver. Nico Porteous took home bronze.
In the final competition of the night, X Games rookie Laurie Blouin proved that her Olympic silver was no fluke. The 22-year-old Canadian bested Zoi Sadowski-Synnott and veteran Jamie Anderson for a gold in Pacifico Women’s Snowboard Big Air. Blouin landed a frontside 900 and a cab double underflip for a combined score of 77.00.
X Games Aspen continues tomorrow with Jeep Women’s Ski Slopestyle, The Real Cost Men’s Ski Big Air Elimination, Jeep Men’s Snowboard Slopestyle Elimination, Snowmobile Freestyle, Women’s Ski Big Air and The Real Cost Men’s Snowboard Big Air. Following competition, Lil Wayne kicks off three days of music on the GEICO stage. Schedules and TV listings available at XGames.com.
Danny Chi ESPN Communications, 310-642-1509, [email protected]
Grace Coryell ESPN Communications, 818-585-3696, [email protected]
Olivia Wilson ESPN Communications, 213-304-1919, [email protected]