Sildaru lands world first switch 1080 in ski halfpipe world victory

Courtesy of Red Bull Media Service Team

Sadowski-Synnott storms to snowboard slopestyle gold as McMorris earns silver.

Kelly Sildaru put down the first switch 1080 ever in competition by a female rider to edge out Olympic ski halfpipe champion Cassie Sharpe and take gold at the 2019 FIS World Championships. Here is all you need to know:

– Estonian Sildaru knew she needed something special in her final run to beat Canadian Sharpe’s score of 94.40 and she wowed the Utah crowd with the switch 1080 to defeat her rival by just 0.60 for her maiden world title.

– The 16-year-old completed three 360-degree rotations and landed facing backwards down the pipe to triumph with American Brita Sigourney in bronze.

– Sildaru, who became the youngest woman to win Winter X Games gold aged 13 in 2016, said: “I wasn’t sure if I should do it because I didn’t know if I was going to land it. At first I thought I should do what I did on my second run and just go higher and be better but then I thought, ‘Why don’t you try?’ and then I did and I couldn’t believe it! I’m shaking.”

– New Zealand’s Zoi Sadowski-Synnott continued her superb form of late by taking home snowboard slopestyle gold with a top qualifying score of 91.75, despite being concussed on her second qualifying run. The final was cancelled due to bad weather, meaning the 17-year-old improved on her 2017 silver.

– She explained: “I pretty much found out maybe 20 minutes before the medal ceremony. I wasn’t going to compete in the finals today.”

– In the men’s snowboard slopestyle, Canadian Mark McMorris lost out to USA’s Chris Corning for gold by just 0.25 of a point as the best qualifying scores counted following the cancellation of the final due to high winds.

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