Young Wānaka snowboarder Zoi Sadowski-Synnott has claimed the gold medal at the FIS Snowboard Big Air World Cup held in Kreischberg, Austria over the weekend.
This was the first Snowboard Big Air World Cup of the season and the first opportunity for athletes to earn qualification points towards the 2022 Olympic Winter Games.
After crashing her first run, the three-run format with the top two scores combined meant the pressure was on for Sadowski-Synnott. She successfully stomped a backside 1080 in her second run and a switch back 900 in her third to take the win, with a combined score of 162.40.
This was the first time the Wānaka-based athlete has landed a back 1080 in competition.
“It was pretty difficult [after crashing the first run], I put a lot of pressure on myself, but I wanted to land the backside 1080 in competition,” said Sadowski-Synnott.
“I only learnt it in New Zealand this summer and so I was just stoked to land that in my second run. It really set me up for the switch back 900.”
Britt Hawes, Communications Manager Snow Sports NZ, said the level of riding was incredibly high in the women’s category, with all three podium scores spanning only one point. Kokomo Murase (Japan) scored the single highest score of the night, finishing in second place with an overall score of 161.80. Snowboard Big Air veteran Anna Gasser (Austria) rounded out the podium in third with a score of 161.40.
Seven Kiwi athletes competed over the weekend in Kreischberg at the Big Air World Cup in both Snowboard and Freeski. Snowboarders Cool Wakushima (Queenstown) had her World Cup debut finishing in 17th place, Tiarn Collins (Queenstown) finished in 18th place and Mitchell Davern (Auckland) finished in 36th place.
Over on the freeski side Margaux Hackett (Wānaka) finished in 12th place, Ben Barclay (Auckland) finished in 38th place and Luca Harrington (Wānaka) finished in 48th place in his first Big Air World Cup of his career.
Read edition 1009 of the Wānaka Sun here.