By Liam Downey
The Freeski Slopestyle Final was even more climactic than anticipated, as Breck-local Bobby Brown edged out New Zealand’s Jossi Wells for the win in his final run. Since the prelims were cancelled on Friday, the entire field of 35 skiers was funneled through a one-run Preliminary to determine the 12 finalists. Henrik Harlaut won the Preliminary handily. “The underground skiers are showing the pros what time it is”, Henrik joked in an accent that is equal-parts Swedish and Borat, with an odd infusion of hip-hop diction. Indeed he did, and although Harlaut finished third in the final, he was second to Jossi Wells until Brown’s final run, wooing the crowd with an afterbanged display of rodeo 9 double grabs and boosted switch 12s.
Jossi’s run consisted of switch 630 into both switch 10s and a switch 9 nose, closing with a blind 630 out of the up rail. Sitting in third place with two skiers to go, 17-year-old B-Brown (no relation to Whitney) laid down the most ballsy run of the day: 450 on the flat-down box into switch bio 10 mute, followed by switch double flip 900, a kangaroo flip, and a misty 450 off the up-rail. Although Brown didn’t throw any rightside spins, his timely delivery of two distinct double-flips (in low light, what more) was heavily rewarded by the judges.
PK Hunder finished in a disappointing fourth place, docked for a revert after his double cork 10 on the final jump of his last run. Matt “Day” Walker, on the other hand, was more than stoked on his fifth-place finish: “I don’t care if I didn’t win, I’m spending 10% at the bar tonight” he assured us after stomping the shit out of his 10 blunt on the bottom air. All told, the Winter Dew Tour Freeski Slopestyle Final went off without a hitch, and with three young bloods on the podium, this season’s competition schedule is looking as unpredictable as it is exciting.