Kokomo Murase came into finals riding high after qualifying in second behind her teammate Reira Iwabuchi, and the 16-year-old was able to keep the momentum rolling by stomping a backside double cork 1080 mute and a frontside double cork 900 frontside grab, for a two-run combined score of 173.75 that had her nearly 24 points ahead of second-place Anna Gasser (AUT) when the dust settled.
The victory was the first World Cup win for the young rider who famously won X Games big air gold at just 13 years of age back in 2018, and she showed once again on Saturday night that she’s got the nerves and the tricks to excel on the biggest of stages.
“I’m so happy,” “I was very, very nervous because everyone was riding so good today. I’m just looking forward to doing my best riding in every competition leading up to the Olympics and then to do my best there in Beijing.”
As mentioned, Anna Gasser stomped a cab double underflip 900 mute and a backside 720 melon to finish in second behind Kokomo Murase with a score of 150.00, giving the 30-year-old Austrian her 13th big air World Cup podium and moving her into second place all-time behind her compatriot Stefan Gimpl.
More importantly, perhaps, is that Anna Gasser’s performance on Saturday gives her a strong start to a season in which many tout her as the favorite to repeat as big air gold medallist at the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games.
Third place on the day was Canada’s Jasmine Baird, who earned her first career big air World Cup podium on the strength of a cab double underflip 900 mute and a backside 720 mute for a score of 148.75.