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McMorris, Sharpe, d'Artois and Harle ready to go at the X Games

The four Whistler-affiliated athletes are part of a deep, international field in Aspen, Colo. for one of the world's premier snow sports competitions Jan. 27 to 29

The 2023 X Games are almost upon us, and Whistler-affiliated athletes will once again be throwing on the contest bibs in Aspen, Colo.

Mark McMorris, Darcy Sharpe, Simon d'Artois and Teal Harle find themselves amidst a deep field of international contenders set to engage in one of the world's premier snow sports events from Jan. 27 to 29. Reigning Olympic big air champ Su Yiming of China, nine-time X Games medallist Marcus Kleveland of Norway and three-time Olympic halfpipe medallist David Wise of the United States are just three of the big names they will be testing themselves against. 

McMorris and Sharpe are no doubt chomping at the bit to return to action after both failed to make the final of their last major competition, the 2023 Laax Open. McMorris, 29, is tied with Jamie Anderson of Team USA as the most decorated Winter X Games athlete ever. The veteran snowboard freestyler lives part-time in Whistler and will be looking to add to the 21 medals he's already earned at the event. 

Sharpe also knows what it feels like to win at the X Games. The 26-year-old snowboarder has four medals under his belt, including slopestyle gold in 2020. Sharpe's older sister, Cassie, is a halfpipe skier with five X Games medals of her own, but she elected not to compete in this year's edition of the contest after a tumultuous Olympic cycle. 

d'Artois is coming off a fruitful weekend of World Cup action in Calgary, Alta. where he won bronze and placed fourth in consecutive days. The 30-year-old is hoping not to miss the halfpipe ski podium by one point again, as he did on Jan. 21 when teammate Noah Bowman barely pulled ahead of him for third. Back in 2015, d'Artois became the first Canadian man to win a ski halfpipe competition at the X Games. 

Harle, 26, has an X Games big air bronze medal from 2022 on his resume. The freestyle skier's best Olympic finish was fifth in slopestyle at Pyeongchang 2018, but he had a tougher go of it in Beijing last year placing 26th in slopestyle and 31st in big air. Harle was born in Campbell River, B.C. but now calls Whistler home. 

Other Canadian men ready to throw down in Aspen this weekend include ski slopestylers Max Moffatt (Caledon, Ont.) and Eduoard Therriault (Lorraine, Que.) as well as halfpipe athletes Bowman (Calgary, Alta.) and Brendan Mackay (Calgary). 

On the women's side, Laurie Blouin of Stoneham, Que. is the lone Canadian snowboarder who will compete in both slopestyle and big air against the likes of defending Olympic big air queen Anna Gasser of Austria and New Zealand's Zoi Sadowski-Synnott, a three-time Olympic medallist.

Slopestyle skier Megan Oldham (Parry Sound, Ont.) and halfpipers Rachael Karker (Guelph, Ont.), Amy Fraser (Calgary) and Dillan Glennie (Courtenay, B.C.) will all try to dethrone Chinese phenom Eileen Gu, who is the favourite in virtually every contest she enters.  

Visit the X Games website for more details and viewing options.

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