Sarah Burke honoured at X Games 

Kaya Turski opens with gold in slopestyle

click to enlarge BY DARREN ROBERTS

The X Games held a candlelight tribute to fallen freeskier Sarah Burke on Thursday night, with most of the athletes and thousands of fans in attendance. Husband Rory Bushfield, her parents and her sister were also there for the tribute.

It was a silent, reflective affair with athletes skiing down the halfpipe, while images of Sarah flickered on X-shaped screens and the side of the big air ramp.

Following the ski down the pipe, there was an interview with teammate Jen Hudak and other video reflections.

For the tribute video, visit ESPN's website.

Burke, 29, passed away in Utah on Jan. 19 after being injured in a training run on Jan. 10. She was one of the best-known freeskiers in the world and a member of the Canadian Freestyle Ski Team.

At tribute of another kind took place earlier in the day with Kaya Turski landing the first switch 1080 by a female at Winter X Games to take her third consecutive X Games gold medal in the sport.

As she did at the Dew Tour the previous weekend, Turski dedicated her win to Burke:

"We have someone watching from above whom we need to make proud," she said. "She constantly pushed the sport, even when she didn't need to, by doing new and harder tricks. I think now it's our turn to keep pushing for her."

In her post-run interview, Turski said:

"I always looked up to Sarah, I always will look up to Sarah, and just heading into the first rail I even said to myself, 'let's do this Sara.' She was with me the whole run."

For a video of Turski click here.

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