Gold Finds Podium at Laax Open with Never-Been-Done Trick
U.S. Snowboard Pro Team member Taylor Gold rounded out the podium at the 2020 Laax Open halfpipe finals in third place by landing the first-ever double Michalchuk 1080 in snowboard halfpipe competition.
“I was so stoked to put my new trick in a run,” said Taylor. “To end up in third was unreal. It feels like I finally got some redemption for three years of dealing with my knee injury.”
Taylor’s result serves as his fourth World Cup podium, and his first since 2015. A top-three finish at the Laax Open, arguably Europe’s pinnacle park and pipe snowboarding event, should be a confidence builder moving forward into the remainder of the season.
“Taylor’s never been done double Michalchuk 1080 was the perfect way to end a classic Taylor Gold run,” said U.S. Snowboard Halfpipe Pro Team Head Coach Rick Bower. “Huge amplitude, unmatched style, and textbook execution are what Taylor is known for. It has been an epic five-year battle returning from a shattered knee cap, but now the world knows Taylor Gold is back.”
U.S. Snowboard team rider Chase Blackwell finished in a respectable sixth place, followed U.S. Rookie Team rider Jason Wolle in seventh. Jason showed great confidence in only his second World Cup final ever with huge amplitude in a run that resembled controlled chaos from top to bottom.
In a very familiar scenario, Australian Scotty James continued his winning streak from January of 2018 to remain the FIS Cup Standings leader. Yuto Totsuka of Japan finished in second place.
FIS Snowboard World Cup halfpipe competition will continue after X Games next week in Aspen, Colo. at the Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area where halfpipe qualifications are set to go down on Jan. 29, followed by finals on Jan. 31.