Sharpe takes big air title, $12K from Showcase Showdown 

Whistler rider hits podium twice during two-day version of Canada's oldest snowboard competition

click to enlarge PHOTO BY DAVID BUZZARD / WWW.DAVIDBUZZARD.COM - Darcy Sharpe celebrates atop the podium after winning Saturday's big air on Day 2 of the Showcase Showdown. Sharpe also finished second in the pro men's slopestyle on Friday.
  • Photo by David Buzzard / www.davidbuzzard.com
  • Darcy Sharpe celebrates atop the podium after winning Saturday's big air on Day 2 of the Showcase Showdown. Sharpe also finished second in the pro men's slopestyle on Friday.

It's been a pretty good couple of weeks for Darcy Sharpe.

After a top-six finish at the Burton U.S. Open in Vail, Colo., last week, the Whistler rider returned home and collected $12,000 in the two days of the Showcase Showdown.

Sharpe was the runner-up in the pro men's slopestyle on Friday, March 14, and followed that up with a big air triumph in rainy conditions Saturday, earning the biggest chunk of the $40,000 prize purse up for grabs in Canada's longest-running snowboard competition.

"I came into these events just stoked to ride," said Sharpe, who was a Showdown winner in 2011 as well. "Showcase Showdown was one of the first events I ever won, so it's kind of a sick contest for me to come to, and I like just riding with all the homies from Whistler."

Ryan Manning finished second on Saturday, while Matts Kulisek rounded out the podium on a rainy day that forced riders to dial down the difficulty level of their tricks. Sharpe won with a frontside double cork 1080 that earned a 91.3 from judges.

"Not too impressive, but it was tough conditions, so it was really who could put down a trick," said Sharpe.

Katherine Lacroix-Vogel was Saturday's pro women's winner, taking home $2,500 for the victory, while Canadian Olympian Jenna Blasman finished second and Molly Milligan finished third. Lacroix-Vogel put a frontside 720 to her feet on the first of two finals runs, scoring an 80.3 for the victory.

"I was thinking about doing a safety run, but I'm really glad I didn't, because the second run was way too slow to do anything else," she said.

Gord Lehane was the amateur men's winner on Saturday.

Olympic men's slopestyle finalist Maxence Parrot edged Sharpe for the pro men's title and $8,000 top prize on Friday, but battled illness on Saturday and finished sixth, one place out of the money. Ryan Stassel reached the podium for third in Friday's slopestyle.

Jess Rich took down the women's slopestyle win and was joined on the podium by Breanna Stangeland in second and Blasman in third. Sean Fitzsimons won the men's amateur title.

Check Pique on Thursday, March 20 for more on the weekend of competition.

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