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Sunday Snowboard images from Winter X Games, Aspen.
NEWS

Ayumu Hirano Takes Gold

Jan 282018

WHAT A NIGHT! Monster Energy congratulates Ayumu Hirano for his explosive gold medal run in the halfpipe at X Games Aspen 2018 in which he was awarded a remarkable 99.00 points. Building on his gold medal from X Games Oslo 2016, this was Hirano’s first at the storied venue at Buttermilk Mountain Aspen, Colorado.

Conditions could not have been better on Sunday night as the international field of riders lined up atop the 22-foot SuperPipe for the premier event of the competition. With crisp temperatures in the mid-twenties and a raucous crowd, the stage was a set for what was arguably the most progressive halfpipe session X games had ever seen.

For Hirano, who has been competing at X Games since he was 14-years-old when he came out of nowhere to take home silver as a rookie, it was to be a night to remember as he came at the pipe with precision, amplitude and a utter determination to win gold.

Going into his third run the 19-year-old was already sitting in 1st place with a score of 96.66. As it were, many riders would have assumed they were safe but Hirano, as we all know, is not just any rider.

Firing things off with a 20-foot backside Indy air, we didn’t need judges to understand that Hirano’s first hit was the highest of the night. From there he did something never before seen in the X Games pipe throwing back-to-back double cork 1440’s, the first frontside, the second cab. Without missing a beat and still caring the same speed from the top of the pipe the goofy-footed Hirano spun a frontside double cork 1260 before finishing his run with an incredible backside 1260 double cork.

 

Though it took the judges longer than usual to deliberate, when the score came back a 99.00 the crowd went wild, for it was known they had just witnessed one of the best halfpipe runs in the history of snowboarding.

 

Standing at the bottom, and barely cracking a smile, as they placed the gold medal around his neck he simply said, “Tonight, I was only looking to win.”

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