For the first ever Big Air final in the Olympics, the women that earned their spot in the spectacle did not disappoint. Landing a cab double cork 1080 on her final drop, Austria’s Anna Gasser secured gold with a 96.00 and the highest combined 2 out of 3 runs, edging out the United States’ Jamie Anderson over seven full points when it was all said and done. A bit of redemption for Gasser’s poor showing in the windy slopestyle final, Anna’s 185.00 was well earned, especially considering she overcame two arguably low scores on her first jumps.
Running by FIS rules, the Big Air final combined the best two-out-of-three runs which forces the riders to perform more than just one trick. Jamie Anderson started out with a deep frontside 1080 on her first run and a cab double cork 900 to cap of a silver performance coming in at a combined score of 177.25.
Zoi Sadowski-Synnott, the 16-year-old from New Zealand, had a huge showing and walked away with a bronze after landing one of our personal favorites, a double Wildcat and backing it up with a solid jump for a combined score of 157.50. Zoi’s medal is the first New Zealand Winter Olympic medal in over 25 years. Just missing the podium was the young Japanese phenom Reira Iwabuchi, after failing to land clean on two out of three runs. The United States’ Julia Marino and Jessika Jenson also failed to podium with two out of three runs resulting in falls.
Finally getting to display where women’s snowboarding is progressing on the Olympic stage, Gasser has to be stoked on her performance. Congrats Anna, thanks for putting on a show!