Anchorage snowboarder Ryan Stassel landed three 1260s on his way to claiming the first gold medal for an American at the International Ski Federation Ski and Snowboard World Championships in Kreischberg, Austria. It was also Stassel’s first win at a major competition.
“I have been working on that run for a really long time, and it feels really good to finally pull it all together here at the World Championships,” the 22-year-old told the Alaska Dispatch News.
Stassel’s score of 97.5 put him 3.75 points ahead of second-place finisher and defending world champ Roope Tonteri of Finland. Seventeen-year-old Kyle Mack of West Bloomfield, Michigan, nabbed third with a score of 92.75.
Stassel’s first run earned a 94 from the judges, but he put up only 51 points on his second. He bounced back with his three-1260 third run to win gold.
“There were a lot of good riders from all over the world going for gold,” Stassel told the Alaska Dispatch News. “All I knew was I had to do my best to win. I would say this was the best run I have ever landed.”