“It felt pretty good,” Vockensperger said of his run, “I know I could have maybe been a little cleaner on the last two obstacles, but I’m pretty stoked about my jump line. It wasn’t easy though, for sure. If you look around, it’s snowing and it was windy, conditions were tough, but I’m super hyped that we were able (to compete).
“I’m also stoked for Val (Guseli) and my teammate Leon Guetl – it’s his first podium – so I’m really hyped for those guys too.”
While Guseli would have to settle for second place, earning his first career World Cup podium in slopestyle competition was still a significant achievement for the young Australian, and with his teammate Jesse-James Parkinson earning a fifth-place result in his first World Cup start, the future is looking bright for squad from Down Under.
Third place went to the men mentioned by Vockensperger, as Leon Guetl put down one of the cleanest runs of the competition for a score of 77.00. With some of the most technical rail tricks landed by anybody on the day – including a half-cab on, switch backside 540 melon out on the first flat bar and a backside noseslide to backslide tailslide to 270 out on the final down rail, Guetl’s run was one of the most creative seen on Sunday.
With their wins in Bakuriani, both Blouin and Vockensperger jumped into the lead of the respective women’s and men’s slopestyle World Cup standings.
Blouin now has 160 points to put herself in a tie with Japan’s Kokomo Murase on the women’s side of things, while Vockensperger’s 181 points put him well clear of Canada’s Sebastien Toutant, who has 145 points.
With Bakuriani now completed, the results in, and with the extremely dedicated and passionate local organisers proving themselves more than up to the task of hosting next season’s World Championships, the FIS Snowboard Park & Pipe World Cup will take a break next week before moving on to Spindleruv Mlyn (CZE) for the penultimate competition of the 2021/22 season.