Pierre Luc Gagnon Holds off Shaun White for Skate Vert Win


Bucky Lasek, Shaun White and Pierre-Luc Gagnon were the last three riders to go in the skate vert superfinals – ranked third to first – but it came down to the last runs to decide the podium order. Bucky skated awesome in the 10-man finals. But after advancing to the 5-man superfinals his board got away from him a few times and he wasn’t able to put together the runs he had planned and he finished third with 87.75.

“I just fell short on one last trick before I was going to bring my last tricks,” Lasek said. “My last three tricks were going to be all new and more technical. I was going to do a frontside nollie flip stalefish 360, but I fell two walls before I was going to get a chance to do it.”

Check out PLG’s second run of the Superfinals, his highest score

The score to beat was Gagnon’s 94.00, and White was looking for the win with massive airs, lip tricks, and he even pulled out the armadillo. But when he dropped in for the final run with the pressure on, his board got away from him partway through and the win went to Gagnon. White took home second place with 89.75.

“It means so much to me right now because I was getting pretty frustrated after being so close twice this year,” Gagnon said. “At the X Games and at the first stop of the Dew Tour, in both events I was right there, and I ended up losing at the last minute.”

But he came through today at the Toyota Challenge with what he hails as, “The best run I’ve ever done in my life.”

That run went like this: Dropped in to alley oop kickflip mute, kickflip melon, kickflip body varial 5, body varial 540 with board on the right side, air to fakie, 720, McTwist, kickflip mute to fakie, switch heelflip frontside air 360 right into a nollie heelflip indy 360.

“I’ve never done the switch heelfip frontside air before in a contest run and that’s what I’ve been looking for all year,” Gagnon said.

Sandro Dias also advanced to the superfinals after some amazing earlier runs, but he struggled to keep his board under his feet at times and finished fourth. Fellow Brazilian Pedro Barros was tied for first with Gagnon earlier in the finals with back-to-back 540 variations like his indy 5 into stalefish 5, but after advancing to the superfinals he was boosting his massive airs but wasn’t able to pull his runs together and he finished fifth.

Check out Shaun’s first run of the Superfinals, his highest score

Now it all comes down to next month’s Dew Tour Championships in Las Vegas where the Dew Cup is on the line. Gagnon is now leading the charge with 190 points, with Lasek second with 182 and White in third with 172.

“I feel great because I’m in first place and I was really happy with my skating here,” Gagnon said. “That’s going to give me more time to even better that run. To score a 94.00, that’s putting a lot of pressure on Shaun.”

Click the link for the full results from the skate vert finals.

Vert Ramp Overview

PLG – 1st Place

PLG getting ready for the finals

Shaun White – 2nd Place

Shaun White preparing for his run

Bucky Lasek – 3rd Place

Sandro Dias – 4th Place

Pedro Barros – 5th Place

Andy Macdonald – 6th Place

Bob Burnquist – 7th Place

Sam Beckett – 8th Place

Adam Taylor – 9th Place

Danny Mayer – 10th Place