With its interesting course and stellar line-up, the Burton US Open slopestyle is – at least in any non-Olympic season – the biggest event of its kind. In the years when the five rings have come around, it’s also a chance for those who won a medal to consolidate their reputation at the top of the sport. Meanwhile for those who left the Games empty-handed, it’s a platform on which to show that, had it been their day, they might have been the ones ending up on the cereal boxes.
That would have certainly been on Mark McMorris’ mind as he dropped in for the final. Two Olympic bronze medals is nothing to be sniffed at, but the Canadian is never happier than when he’s the one on top. After qualifying in first, this event looked like his to lose.
“Few riders handle pressure as well as Mark, and his third run was a belter”
He didn’t make it easy, leaving himself with a mountain to climb on his third run after failing to get a run down on his first two attempts, and picking up an injury to boot. Few riders handle pressure as well as Mark, though, and his third run was a belter; half cab on to boardslide pretzel out, switch backside 270 on, switch boardslide corked 630 out (channeling main rival Marcus Kleveland), switch backside 1260 and back-to-back 1440s.