Jossi Wells has been a mainstay in competitive freeskiing. Since he took the industry by storm at 16 in The Ski Tour days, to his first X Games silver in 2008 to his near miss 4th place at the 2014 Olympics. Considered one of the most stylish skiers on the planet, it’s hard to believe that after a HOF-level career, Jossi Wells had his best year ever, in 2015-16..
In an odd bit of career symmetry, Jossi Wells started off the 2015-16 season, the same way he started the 2008-2009 season: With a silver medal performance at the Winter Dew Tour. Yes—-seven years ago at the first Winter Dew Tour—-Jossi took second place, and this winter he took second place behind MEC’s Gus Kenworthy. “It’s been awhile since I’ve been on a Dew Tour box, so I’m amped,” said Wells. “This is one the heaviest slopestyle finals I’ve ever participated in.”
The tour took Jossi to Korea, for the first ever World Cup in PyeongChang, South Korea. The event served as the Olympic-mandated test event, prior to the 2018 Games. The event hosted one of the most creative slopestyle courses ever seen, which played right into Jossi’s hands as he usually looks for the more creative lines in a contest. Ultimately, the kiwi took 3rd place, and posted this to his Instagram, “Took 3rd at the Olympic test event here in Korea! Jazzed to be on the podium w/ the styling’ homies [Alex Bellemare] & [Henrik Harlaut].”
Continuing his worldwide travels, Wells headed to Norway for the third inaugural contest in a row, this iteration being the Winter X Games Oslo. City big airs might not be in the wheelhouse for Jossi (see: Boston GP, 2015’s Air + Style), but Wells didn’t turn down a chance to show off in front of a raucous Scandinavian crowd of 15,000. Ultimately, Wells didn’t crack the podium like MEC teammates Henrik Harlaut & Gus Kenworthy.
After the Mammoth Grand Prix, which was plagued by inclement weather for a second year in a row, the whole snowsports industry descended on Aspen, CO for the Winter X Games. Already a four-time medalist in X Games competition, Jossi put the screws to the entire men’s field, running away with the contest en route to his first ever X Games gold. “I am so amped,” said Wells, “I’ve been trying for 10 years to get this bad boy. Growing up, my dream was to get an X Games medal. I’ve got some silver and bronze [medals], but never that elusive gold.”
After basking in his golden glory and hanging out with Laird Hamilton, Jossi headed off to the Big Air at Fenway Park in Boston, where he couldn’t crack the podium, but made finals in freeskiing’s inaugural push at the historic ballpark.
To recap: Jossi won the biggest event in freeskiing, took 2nd at the hardest event in freeskiing, and hit the podium at the most creative slopestyle contest of the year. While he didn’t display the dominance that Gus Kenworthy did or the consistency that Emma Dahlstrom showed on the ladies side, the veteran Kiwi still managed to put together what he’s called the best season of his life.
For that inside 411 on Jossi, check him out on his Instagram, Facebook & Twitter.