Monster Energy’s Henrik Harlaut Claims Gold in Men’s Ski Big Air at X Games Aspen 2020

The Real Cost Men’s Ski Big Air final revolved around one central storyline: Monster Energy’s Henrik Harlaut had a chance to make history this year by setting a new record for most X Games ski medals in history. Going into the competition, Harlaut tied his mentor, American freeski icon Tanner Hall, at eleven total X Games medals (6 gold, 5 silver). Could this be the night? Standing between Harlaut and the historic feat was a stacked field of finalists, including heavy hitters like defending Big Air gold medalist Birk Ruud. What’s more, the Men’s Ski Big Air event had also shifted to a 25-minute jam format this year, putting an emphasis on trick selection and creativity.
Fortunately, creativity is Henrik Harlaut’s middle name. The Swedish freeski icon approached the challenge with his signature big smile and positive energy, as he commenced to send next-level tricks over the 70-foot gap. On his first run, Harlaut unveiled a forward left double bio 1620 safety to clinch an early lead. As the rest of the field fired back with state-of-the art aerials, Harlaut kept defending the number one spot with fast-spinning rotations on different axes, including a switch left double bio 1620 safety, left triple 1620 mute, and a Switch left triple orbital 1260 mute grab. When it was time for final attempts, Harlaut was suddenly leapfrogged by Swiss skier Andri Ragettli, who pulled a never-been-done switch triple misty to take over the lead. Determined to set the new record on not just any medal, but gold, Harlaut responded with a massive left double cork 1620 blunt taking him right back to the top. After high-fiving fans in the crowd, Henrik Harlaut received the Ski Big Air gold medal as the winner of one of the most epic finals Buttermilk Mountain had ever seen. Plus, he is now officially the most decorated ski athlete in X Games history with twelve medals to his name (7 gold, 5 silver).    “For sure this was the best jumping I’ve ever done in my life. I did two or three jumps I’d never done before and landed every jump. I had so much fun. It was crazy. It was awesome. Thank you so, so much for the opportunity!” said Henrik Harlaut upon claiming Men’s Ski Big Air gold at X Games Aspen 2020 on Friday night. Harlaut also found words of gratitude and respect for his mentor Tanner Hall, whose record he surpassed: “Tanner is the greatest of all time and for sure the best. Thank you for the inspiration!” said the 28-year-old from Åre, Sweden.