Colby Stevenson claimed his second X Games Slopestyle Gold today, his second medal of X Games Aspen 2023. The falling snow really affected the speed on the course and most riders couldn’t get a full set of four clean runs. Mac Forehand was second on the day, while Ferdinand Dahl added another Slopestyle bronze to the one he picked up in 2019.
Neither Evan McEachran, Ferdi Dahl nor Fabian Bösch got a clean run to start the day’s event, leaving it to Colby to kick things off with a super tech rail section: a blind switch up 360 transfer 270 out, unnatural 450 on pretzel 270, and both ways switch 270s to backslides. After finding speed through the two sharkfin booters, he finished the run with a double cork 1620 lead stalefish on the money booter.
Mac Forehand followed suit, tossing his signature double cork 900 bringback on the sharkfin and finishing his run with back-to-back switch dub cork 10s. However, the new snow kept wreaking havoc with the speed and affected almost everyone, that is, until Max Moffatt got a run in to earn a spot in third, at least for a bit. Alex Hall looked to up the creativity to counteract the conditions, and used all parts of the rail sections, with a Tokyo drift tips under 270 to S-rail pretzel 270, one of the day’s most unique takes in the rail section. He followed up with 450 on pretzel 270 out and both ways switch 270s.
From his very first run, Colby Stevenson showed he was on point even in challenging conditions. Photo by Trevor Brown, Jr./X Games
Evan and Fabian both struggled on the rail sections on their second run, but Ferdi grabbed the top spot with a run chock full of bio rotations in all directions, switch, forward, left and right. But the Norwegian’s stay at the top was short-lived as he was directly followed by Stevenson, whose solid run sent him back to the top. People continued to battle the conditions, with no real threats to the American, before fellow countryman, Alex Hall looked like he was cooking up something special, only to be let down by the slow conditions. The ever-threatening Swiss rider and defending X slopestyle champion Andri Ragettli got snagged by a snow snake and lost all momentum going into the jumps.
Ferdi Dahl opted for a run full of bio rotations that helped him keep forward momentum through the jump section. Photo: Mark Kohlman/X Games
McEachran and Bösch finally got a handle on the speed and got themselves on the board, but with a winner-takes-all “best run counts” format, they were still in the running. Ferdi had a smoother run jump-wise, but it wasn’t good enough to move him up from third. A-Hall’s run was looking seriously gold-worthy, skiing the second shark fin with the most creativity as he styled through a left cork 900 opposite japan to knuckle-tap nosebutter switch 360. Unfortunately, he just missed his signature double 900 bringback on the last jump. His rail-game had been on point all afternoon, but Alex just couldn’t get a handle on the speed for the jumps. Meanwhile, Andri improved his run massively, but still not quite enough on the rails to move him any higher than fourth.
Everyone dropped one last time, but again the first two riders couldn’t get a clean enough run through the rails and their day was done, while no one else was able to improve their standings as the snow just built and slowed the speed. Stevenson didn’t risk anything and played it safe on his last run. The highlight for many may have been Ferdi’s zero spin on the last jump, but he would be happy with a medal in challenging conditions. Everyone else was affected by the severely reduced speed and the podium was set.
Colby added slopestyle gold to go with his Knuckle Huck bronze from the night before. Photo: Jamie Schwaberow/X Games
Colby Stevenson reclaimed the slopestyle title he won as a rookie back in 2020, but everyone did well to get through a challenging day, with Mac Forehand and Ferdinand Dahl getting their hands on some X Games hardware too.
The day’s less fortunate skiers included Andri Ragettli, who missed the podium in his bid to double down on last year’s win; Birk Ruud, who proved unable to replicate his World Cup success at X Games; and Alex Hall, who had a podium-ready run but couldn’t put it all together.