2017 Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships

Rachel Parent

Bluebird skies and warm temperatures made for perfect conditions in Vail, Colorado for the 35th annual Burton U.S. Open. The event was made up of a technical slopestyle course, built specifically for the Open. Snuggled right next to the slope course is the 22ft super pipe, where spectators can climb the side walls and watch their favorite athletes soar high above them. Following suit from years past, these courses were no joke. As always, the ladies in this event showed up ready to throw down and let the snowboarding world see what they are made of.

Anna Gasser throws her hands up after nailing her winning run

“On the first day of practice we were all like, ‘Holy smokes, this course is burly.’ Like you really hafta be 100% committed.” Jamie Anderson said about the Slopestyle course built by Snow Park Tech. “For me the last jump was the most intimidating cause you could just go to the moon if you want, so yeah, speed management and just trusting yourself and your adaptability in your current surroundings.”

Maddie Mastro stalefish out of the pipe

The course was comprised of a few rails at the top, two massive jumps, and a jump/rail combo. As daunting as it might have been, the women were able to put down impressive and flawless runs.

Jamie Anderson 2nd, Anna Gasser 1st, Spencer O’Brien 3rd

“The course this year was pretty cool. For the last three years, it’s been pretty stock, like three rails and three jumps, so it was cool to see them switch it up, keeping the three jumps but also putting the rail feature in the middle there. It was probably the most challenging feature of the course cause if you didn’t land like bolts on that second jump, you were hauling into that rail.” Spencer O’brien reminisced about the course, “It was difficult to figure out the speed for the course, but I got it dialed by the end of the week. It was cool though because it allowed people switch up their runs from what they’ve normally been doing this year and I think we saw a lot of variety because of it.”

Miyagi Onitsuka cleans the Red Bull rail/jump combo feature

During the interviews, Jamie asked Anna Gasser what inspired her to do a cab 10. “Well I’ve always been riding with the guys so why not do the same tricks as them? And maybe I’m a little crazy up there. If you saw me five years ago, you would see how sketchy I was when I would snowboard.”

Spencer, Jamie and Anna celebrate their runs and Anna’s victory

Anna gasser scooped up the gold and her first ever, highly coveted USO title with a score of 83.85, Olympic gold medalist, Jamie Anderson was hot on her tail (broken elbow and all) with a second place finish of 81.55 and Canada’s Spencer O’brien grabbed up the remaining spot on the podium for a 3rd place finish of 75.65.

Jamie Anderson smiles after her final run

Meanwhile, Chloe Kim, only 16 years old, was busy sweeping up another first place spot in women’s halfpipe. “I’ve been coming to the U.S. Open for such a long time and it’s always so nice to be back. Today I was super hyped with the way I was riding and it feels really good to put one down.” She finished her run with a final score of 87.12. Elena Hight took second, scoring an 80.12 and Maddie Mastro scored 78.25 for a 3 place title.

Chloe Kim boosts out of the pipe during semi finals

Posted by on 03/06


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