womens ski knuckle huck podium x games 2024
Olivia Asselin gets gold at the first-ever X Games Knuckle Huck for women. Trevor Brown, Jr./X Games

Event News

smooth like butter

Olivia Asselin takes home the golden knuckles at the first-ever women’s X Games Knuckle Huck

By: Ethan Stone January 28, 2024

Knuckle Huck has been a thing for a few years now at the X Games, a more relaxed contest that lets riders get creative without the pressure of the main events of big air, slopestyle and halfpipe. However, it’s been an event only for men until this year.

Eight women tossed their hat into the ring for the inaugural women’s ski Knuckle Huck. It was a diverse crew, with everyone from Olympic gold medalist Sarah Hoefflin to street skier Taylor Lundquist to the first woman skier to land a double cork, Lisa Zimmermann. Lisa’s been out of serious competition for years due to a head injury, so it was great to see her back at X for the first time since 2017.

Things got started off slowly, with many women going for various 180 to 360 combinations. Lisa opened up with a creative take, a switch 180 to front flip with her hands clasped behind her back the whole time, but didn’t get much love from the judges, who were looking for riders to maximize the knuckle aspect—in other words, hand drags and butters. Accordingly, Sarah Hoefflin got off to an early lead in the jam-session format with a perfectly executed nose butter 540.

Winter X Games 2024 | Women's Ski Knuckle Huck | Full Replay X Games YouTube

It wasn’t until the third run that the top of the leaderboard was shaken up, as the talented Rell Harwood boosted a big nose butter 720 deep into the landing and up the scoreboard past Sarah. She wasn’t there for long though, because on the next run Olivia laced up a flawless flatspin 540. Combined with the bag of other tricks she’d been stomping—namely an explosive hand drag cork 540 and a clean-as-butter nose drag 360, Olivia’s flatspin was the trick that tipped the scales in her favor and earned her the rare honor of the first women’s ski gold medalist in Knuckle Huck. On her last hit, she dropped a stylish zero spin shifty to seal the deal.

Rell Harwood X games knuckle huck
Rell Harwood buttering her way onto the podium. Joshua Duplechian/X Games

Rell took second with her impressive nose butter 720, while Sarah Hoefflin held on to third with her nosebutter 540 and a couple zero spins for good measure. We also saw some great skiing from Anni Karava with a super clean nollie 720 and a switch 180 to nollie 540, Alia Eichinger with some nice 180 to 360 combos, and Taylor Lundquist’s bodyslide 180.