Julia Marino and Ryan Stassel made themselves right at home at the first venue test event for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games, finishing second and third, respectively, Saturday at the big air world cup stop in Alpensia, Korea.
The 19-year-old Marino led a U.S. women’s team that placed three riders in the top five. Her score of 157.00 edged out Great Britain’s Katie Ormerod for second by 0.25 points, but was 23.75 behind the winning score of 180.75 from Austria’s Anna Gasser.
Fifth in qualifying, Marino’s performance in the final vaulted her over Ormerod (fourth in qualifying) as well as teammates Jamie Anderson and Hailey Langland, who were second and third, respectively, in qualifying. Langlan, a 2016 Youth Olympian, scored 150.75 for fourth place to go with her second place two weeks ago in Milan, Italy. Anderson, the reigning Olympic slopestyle champion, scored a 124.25 for fifth to round out an impressive showing by the U.S. women.
This marks the second world cup podium finish of the calendar year for Marino, who won the stop in Boston last February. The result moves Marino into third in this season’s world cup standings with 950 points, behind Gasser, who leads with 2,000 points, and Langland, second with 1,300 points.
Stassel’s third place was the top U.S. men’s finish as three American riders placed in the top 10. The 2015 slopestyle world champion and 2014 Olympian scored 177.25, only 0.75 away from Max Parrot of Canada. Parrot’s teammate, Mark McMorris, won with his 184.75. Stassel was also third at the big air world cup last February in Quebec.
Seventeen-year-old Chris Corning, the 2016 junior world champion in both big air and slopestyle, matched his fifth-place showing in Milan two weeks ago by scoring 165.75, while 16-year-old Redmond Gerard picked up his first top-10 finish by placing ninth with 141.75, a considerable improvement over his 49th-place finish in Italy.
After the Korea event, Corning holds fifth place in the overall world cup standings with 450 points, while Stassel jumps to sixth, only 50 points behind. Norway’s Marcus Kleveland sits atop the table with 1,000 points.
The big air world cup tour moves halfway around the world to continue the 2016-17 season with the ARAG Big Air Freestyle Festival Dec. 3 in Moenchengladbach, Germany.