Women’s Burton US Open slopestyle finals canceled; Anderson defaults for 6th USO title | VailDaily.com

Women’s Burton US Open slopestyle finals canceled; Anderson defaults for 6th USO title

Editor’s note: This story has been updated from its original posting.

It’s impressive to see a sport where athletes huck themselves off jumps and rails talk about safety — something other sports could take note of.

After high winds caused the Burton U.S. Open women’s slopestyle finals to be canceled on Friday, March 9, the riders all seemed happy with the decision.

“It was cool that the Burton Open was down to let everyone have a discussion,” said Jamie Anderson, who earned her sixth Burton Open slope title after Wednesday’s qualifying results determined the podium with finals canceled. “Democracy is really cool because sometimes we don’t get to have a voice.”

The six women racers set to compete in the finals met the morning of the race and decided against holding the finals, citing safety.

“I think if the weather would have been good today, it would have been a great show,” said Anna Gasser, who claimed second place. “Jamie’s been riding so well, she would have for sure been the one to beat here.”

Julia Marino took third place by a margin of 0.55 over Kokomo Murase.

“I’m scared but inspired,” Anderson said of the 13-year-old Japanese rider Murase.

“She is insane,” Marino said. “She’s super young and coming up and pretty much throwing insane tricks.”

‘Insane Amount of Progression’

Women’s slopestyle has continued to progress over the years, with Anderson helping lead the way, along with others like Gasser.

“There’s been an insane amount of progression the last couple of years, and I feel like the last 10 years I was chilling a lot for a while,” Anderson said. “And now girls like Julia and Anna have really pushed me to try more and get out of my comfort zone. I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing without them.”

Many of the ladies showed off their biggest tricks at the Winter Olympics Big Air competition, which could be coming soon to the tricked-out slopestyle course.

“It’s the goal,” Gasser said of throwing their biggest tricks in a multi-trick course.

“For sure we’re capable, it’s just a matter of practicing,” Marino said. “I think soon you’ll see those types of tricks thrown down.”

For riders like Anderson, fresh off the Olympics in South Korea, a little down time is in the future — mainly hitting the backcountry and riding with friends. But we couldn’t help but ask Anderson about the 2022 Olympics in Beijing.

“I really don’t know. It depends on how I feel,” she said. “I still feel healthy and strong and I love what I’m doing. As long as I continue to enjoy it, I would love to go back. But if not, I’m super down to go film and ride powder and open a new chapter in snowboarding because there’s so much to take out of it, not just competing.”

Entertainment & Outdoors editor Ross Leonhart can be reached at 970-748-2984 and rleonhart@vaildaily.com. Follow him on Instagram at colorado_livin_on_the_hill.

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