turnout at the X Games after riding at exhibition events in 2011 and 2012. Riders raced head-to-head, six at a time. A tangle with two skiers in the semi final nearly ruined Murphy’s chances but he rallied to earn a finals berth. US athlete Keith Gable won the gold and Canadian Alex Massie got the bronze.
Prior lands new trick and a bronze
Snowboarder Christy Prior claimed New Zealand’s second X Games medal – a bronze in the women’s slopestyle. The rookie X Games competitor pulled out a backside 720 trick in her final run to knock Canada’s Spencer O’Brien from third place. O’Brien had earlier landed the first 900 in X Games women’s snowboard slopestyle history. Jamie Anderson of the US won gold and Silje Norendal of Norway took the silver. It was the first time Prior had attempted the 720 trick in competition. O’Brien crashed out of contention in her final run and was fourth.
Jossi Wells back on skis
Wanaka’s Jossi Wells is back on skis, after recovering from a serious neck injury sustained last September. Wells and his brother Byron both competed in the men’s freeski superpipe elimination rounds at the X Games last weekend. Byron was ninth, just missing a finals place. Jossi finished 15th. Snow Sports NZ head coach Tom Willmott said Byron’s run was new and progressive and needed minor improvements. Jossi’s coach, Bruce Wells, said Jossi’s competition was all about striking a balance. Jossi has not skied much in the pipe since the Olympics, is also carrying a knee injury and has been training and competing carefully.