Keeping your balance on a snowboard is hard enough on a normal slope, so it's amazing to see X Games athletes pulling off remarkable tricks while flying high into the night sky. But that will be the case once again tonight in the Snowboard Big Air Final.
Torstein Horgmo is back to defend his style after pulling off a triple backflip 180 last year to win the gold medal. It's going to be tough to dethrone the defending champion, who has added several more moves to his arsenal.
One of his biggest contenders will be Halldor Helgason, who won gold in 2010 before a poor showing knocked him out in the heat stage in his title defense. He'll be back with a vengeance, looking to reclaim what he thinks is rightfully his title.
Sebastien Toutant should also be in the mix. He finished second at Winter X Games 15 but actually had the strongest single run of any competitor. If it weren't for a disappointing second run in the finals, he would be the one entering the competition as the defending champ.
The best American hopes are Sage Kotsenburg and Scotty Lago. Both men made the finals last year but will need to break out some bigger, badder tricks to claim gold.
More than any single competition, the Big Air Final is worth watching simply because of all the awe-inspiring moves you'll see in such a short time period. The aforementioned stars will be pulling off tricks you couldn't even imagine in your wildest dreams.
It's one of the best X Games events of the year, so if you're not a big extreme sports fan, this would be one of the handful competitions you should really check out.
Just like last year, it should be very close at the end, but I think Toutant will pull out the victory.
Schedule for Friday, Jan. 27:
Men's Ski SuperPipe Elimination at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN3, ESPN3D
Snowboard Big Air Final at 10:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, ESPN3, ESPN3D
Women's Snowboard SuperPipe Final at 10:45 p.m. ET on ESPN, ESPN3, ESPN3D
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