The Monster Energy team’s medal run started on Friday in the competitive Jeep Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle final. Defending her gold medal against a roster of rookies, 30-year-old snowboard icon Jamie Anderson from Lake Tahoe, California, dominated the obstacle course with signature style and massive tricks including Cab double underflip 900 Weddle grab. Anderson was joined on the podium by 19-year-old Zoi Sadowski-Synnott from Wanaka, New Zealand, who clinched the silver medal on her stunning fourth run.
Continuing Friday’s action, the fan-favorite Wendy’s Snowboard Knuckle Huck event showcased creative freestyle moves off the Big Air ramp’s roll-over, also called the ‘knuckle’. In a major shocker, 17-year-old Dusty Henricksen from Mammoth Lakes, California, bested the world’s most prolific snowboarders to claim the gold medal in his X Games debut. The rookie put down moves like fakie nose-press nollie Cab 540 underflip and kept some tricks up his sleeve for Sunday’s Slopestyle final. What’s more, Anderson made history as the first woman to compete in Snowboard Knuckle Huck at X Games on Friday night.
When the action moved into the Women’s Ski SuperPipe final, seven of the world’s best halfpipe riders took on the 22-foot-high snow structure. The jam session culminated in a head-to-head rivalry between 28-year-old Cassie Sharpe from Comox, Canada, versus X Games newcomer Eileen Gu from China. Sharpe set the bar with a flawless first run including a brand-new leftside 1260 air blasted 10’9” high and a fully inverted 1080. But after suffering a heavy fall on Run 2, Sharpe had to withdraw from competition settling for the silver medal, bringing her X Games record to five medals (2 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze).
The second day of X Games Aspen 2021 continued the team’s medal run in the highly anticipated Monster Energy Women’s Snowboard SuperPipe final. The biggest story was the return of the ‘Queen of the SuperPipe’, 20-year-old snowboard phenom Chloe Kim after her freshman year at Princeton University. Picking up right where she left off with her win at Aspen 2019, Kim posted diverse runs, including a huge method air at 13'7" altitude, big 360 air to fakie, frontside 1080 tailgrab, and switch 720 Weddle to claim her sixth career X Games gold medal. The Olympic gold medalist now owns eight X Games medals (6 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze) in SuperPipe. Welcome back!
With several Saturday events postponed due to inclement weather, Sunday emerged as the weekend’s biggest day of competitions. The Monster Energy team’s medal run also reached its peak, as athletes claimed a whopping nine medals (4 gold, 2 silver, 3 bronze) and reached the podium in all six events on the final day of X Games Aspen 2021.
Starting things off, Sunday morning saw X Games history in the making. No rookie had ever won gold in Men’s Snowboard Slopestyle in 20 years of Winter X Games. That was until X Games rookie Dusty Henricksen stomped a winning run for the ages wearing only a short-sleeved T-shirt on a crisp day. On the strength of moves like a backside 1440 Weddle grab and a double crippler double grab melon to stalefish, Henricksen took gold and also became the first American rider to win Men’s Snowboard Slopestyle since Shaun White’s victory at X Games Aspen 2009. Also rising to the podium, 21-year-old Rene Rinnekangas from Iisalmi, Finland, found his groove in the final and landed a bronze-medal run.
Monster Energy also claimed medals in the Jeep Men’s Ski Slopestyle final. Under blue skies on Buttermilk Mountain, 22-year-old Ferdinand Dahl from Oppegaard, Norway, took silver by landing a perfect run including a huge switch leftside 1260, rightside double bio Japan grab, and alley-oop 720 over the hip. Closely following behind, 23-year-old Evan McEachran from Ochran, Canada, earned bronze on the strength of progressive runs including technical aerials like the rare switch rightside double 1440.
Aerials were also the name of the game in the Pacifico Women's Snowboard Big Air final. Viewers were in for another major surprise, as Monster Energy’s Jamie Anderson came, saw, and conquered the jam session over the 70-foot-long gap. Enormous airs like frontside double cork 1080 and a highly technical Cab backside double cork earned Anderson her very first gold in Big Air. She is officially the most decorated woman in X Games history with 19 medals total (8 gold, 7 silver, 4 bronze). Anderson shared the podium with kiwi ripper Zoi Sadowski-Synnott, who earned the bronze medal by landing a massive backside 1080 Weddle grab on her fourth attempt.