X Games Aspen 2014 : The competition is on, fierce battles are to be expected.

As from this Wednesday 22nd of January 2014, and until Sunday, all eyes are on Aspen, Colorado, USA. Not because there is a conference on the World Economy like in Davos (SWI), or even a convention about preserving the environment. No no, only one of the two biggest Freeski events of this season : the X Games. And you could say the event had an explosive start.

 

A Superpipe that will make you dizzy Photo: ©ESPN/X Games
A Superpipe that will make you dizzy
Photo: ©ESPN/X Games

 

Yes, ESPN deprived us of the Tignes X Games, but we will not retaliate by missing those in Aspen. On the contrary. With the Frenchies being on top of their game like never before in Freeski, it would be a shame to miss any of it. Especially considering all the best freeskiers are there, skiers as well as snowboarders, just before they all go to Russia.

 

And only two days into the competition brought us enough surprises, some quite nice, some more astonishing. Like Shaun White dropping out, because he would rather get prepared for the other big events coming this season, and thought the schedule of the X Games in Aspen would not leave him enough time to properly train before flying off to Russia. This leaves the King’s spot free in snowboarding, in Superpipe as well as in Slopestyle, and the promise of quite an interesting suspense for those comps. Just like if Kelly Slater decided to retire…

 

Bataille des qualifs en Ski Superpipe chez les hommes Photo: ©ESPN/X Games
Battle of the men’s Superpipe qualifications
Photo: ©ESPN/X Games

 

For the nice surprises, we learned yesterday, with the jetlag and all, that Thomas Krief and Kevin Rolland qualified for the Superpipe finals. Ben Valentin unfortunately didn’t make it. As for Marie Martinod and Anaïs Caradeux, both selected, they will go straight to the finals, the number of female athletes competing for the Superpipe being under the requirement for qualification rounds. So let’s cross fingers that everything goes smoothly during training sessions and big in the Pipe tonight (local time, it will be during the night, at 4:30 pm for Europe).

 

Marie Martinod s’approprie le pipe lors des entrainements Photo: ©Maxime Moulin
Marie Martinod getting familiar with the Superpipe during training sessions
Photo: ©Maxime Moulin

 

In short, here is the program of the show to come : today Friday 24th of January, Ski Superpipe finals men and ladies will be held in the evening. Tomorrow, Saturday 25th, all the snowboardiing finals will take place, Slopestyle and Superpipe, men and ladies. And last but not least, on Sunday, ski Slopestyle finals, men and ladies. A big week-end of expecting, happiness, yelling, fearing and laughing to come. All of it to be watched on ESPN network of course (for those equipped).

 

In the meantime, you can always watch how the Slopestyle course goes, thanks to Jesper Tjäder, or even find out how the men’s ski Superpipe qualifications went, just to get an idea of the (very very big) level going on in Aspen this week-end.

 

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Emily - EN
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