X Games Aspen Day 2 notes: Swiss skier Ragettli gets taste of “real gold” with win
Things started to turn last year for Andri Ragettli getting more comfortable at X Games venues.
The Swiss skier made his debut in Aspen 2016 running down the slopestyle course to a sixth place finish as a 16-year-old. Since then, he’s competed every year but 2019 (knee injury) and has added a trip to Norway, which has been hosting a version of the Winter X Games franchise since 2016.
Last year, he finished third in big air at Aspen in January, and less than two months later he won bronze in big air and then gold in slopestyle at the venue outside Lillehammer; it was his first trip to the top of an X Games podium.
Saturday night in his return X Games Aspen, he got a taste of the “real gold” by winning the big air event.
“When I won the gold in Norway someone told me, ‘Yeah, it’s nice but it’s not the real gold.’ And I was like, ‘OK, I’m gonna get it one day.’ It feels really nice to get gold in slope and big air,” Ragettli said Saturday night standing at an eerily quiet Buttermilk venue.
“I had some challenging times with X Games in the beginning when I was 16. I put a lot of pressure on myself and it didn’t really work out. Now that I’m older and experienced, it worked out. I’m super glad.”
In the 30-minute jam format, the skiers were scored on a 50-point system for each trick, and kept the top two scores. The eight-man field was amped, and the group moved so quick they got in a surprise six attempts.
“I thought it was dope. I thought maybe we were going to get four or five jumps, because that what we saw with the other events. Then I saw on the fifth jump there was still a bunch of time left, and I knew we were going to get six,” said Park City’s Alex Hall as he stood with his bronze medal next to Ragettli after the medal ceremony. “He didn’t need more than two runs, though. But I’m glad the rest of us got two more runs.”
French skier Antoine Adelisse rounded out the top three with his first X Games silver; last year he was fourth in the Aspen big air, but won the event at Norway (ahead of Ragettli).
Saturday night, Ragettli pretty much locked it up with his triple-cork 1800 on his first run for 46 points; by his third run, he added another half-rotation to pull off the triple-cork 1980 and 48 points.
“The trip-19, I’ve never done it. It was my first try in a comp. That was really nice to land it perfect,” he said with the Aspen gold around his neck. “I’ve practiced the triple-cork 18 once here in practice, and I knew if everything was going perfect I land those tricks and I go for the 19 and I landed it as well.”
All three will be back Sunday morning for the slopestyle event, which was postponed from Saturday because of weather conditions.
Mother Nature took control on Day 2 of X Games, bringing in some snow and wind that caused the men’s snowboard slopestyle and women’s snowboard big air competitions to be postponed.
The first event of the day, women’s ski slopestyle, was able to take place, but shortly after that competition wrapped, men’s snowboard slopestyle was put on a course hold due to weather complications and then ultimately postponed, along with women’s snowboard big air until Sunday.
Sunday is now a stacked day at X Games, with six events on the schedule, which is subject to change based on weather.
9:30 a.m.: Men’s snowboard slopestyle (streaming live on X Games YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok and the ESPN app)
11 a.m.: Men’s ski slopestyle (ABC)
1:30 p.m.: Women’s snowboard big air (streaming live on X Games YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok and the ESPN app)
6:30 p.m.: Men’s snowboard superpipe (ESPN)
7:45 p.m.: Men’s snowboard big air (ESPN)
8:30 p.m.: Ski knuckle huck (ESPN)
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What: Convergent Circus