SSCV snowboarder Brooklyn DePriest places sixth at FIS Park and Pipe World Junior Championships
SSCV's Tyler Hayden, Evan Wrobel and Oliver Martin placed 32nd, 35th, and 36th, respectively
Ski and Snowboard Club Vail snowboarder Brooklyn DePriest was the top American, placing sixth in the slopestyle event at the FIS Park and Pipe World Junior Championships on Wednesday in Cardrona, New Zealand. Taiga Hasegawa of Japan scored 90.25 to take the gold; his teammate Yuto Miyamura placed third and Canada’s Cameron Spalding rounded out the podium in second.
Of the seven 15-18-year-old Americans selected to compete in New Zealand, four hailed from Ski and Snowboard Club Vail. Nineteen countries were represented in the slopestyle event, with 14 of the 62 male athletes making the finals cut and 12 of the 37 women. Only DePriest and Minnesotan Rebecca Flynn advanced to finals.
SSCV’s Tyler Hayden, Evan Wrobel and Oliver Martin finished 32nd, 35th and 36th, respectively.
SSCV’s freeski and snowboard program director Chris Laske is coaching the event alongside Eric Beauchemin, U.S. Snowboard Team rookie slopestyle coach. In an email, Laske said DePriest, who notched three top-three finishes in the 2023 NorAm Cups and was the National Champion in slopestyle at Copper Mountain, had a bad crash during the finals warm-up.
“Second run in Brooklyn took one of the hardest slams I’ve ever seen him take,” Laske stated. “He got a little anxious coming into the last jump of four, which was by far the biggest jump, and left early, pre-spinning his board, which drastically slowed him down.”
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DePriest came up short on a double 1260 rotation and slammed his entire body into the knuckle of the jump.
“I thought he was done, it was over — he wasn’t competing,” Laske wrote. The U.S. team’s medical staff did a full evaluation and three doctors back in Park City reviewed footage and spoke with DePriest before allowing him to compete.
“It was absolutely amazing he was able to put that slam behind him and stay in the competition,” Laske stated.
After scoring a 58.00 on his first run, DePriest went all-in on the second. The 17-year-old unleashed a cab double 900, front double 1080, backside double 1260 and a switch backside triple 1260. On the final jump, he landed what may have been the first backside triple 1260 in competition.
“There is talk that someone else has landed this trick (I’ve personally never seen it), but we are pretty sure no one’s ever done it in competition before,” Laske wrote in his email.
Commentators on the livestream were surprised and enamored by the move.
“That was sick,” said former American-New Zealand Olympic snowboarder Rakai Tait from the announcing booth. “That was like a video card trick…I want to see that again.”
DePriest scored a 78.00 to slide into third before being pushed to his eventual sixth-place finish.
“Still a super solid finish,” Laske stated. “This junior worlds was equivalent to watching a World Cup pro event. These young kids are seriously pushing the sport to new levels.”
A video replay of the entire slopestyle finals competition is available on fis-ski.com (DePriest’s run starts at 2 hours and 1 minute) and a free livestream for Saturday and Sunday’s big air finals is at WinterGamesNZ.com. The qualification is at 9 a.m. New Zealand time on Saturday, which is Friday at 3 p.m. MST. The finals is at 3:30 p.m. MST on Saturday.