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With calm weather conditions and a record crowd in attendance, the scene was set for the season-long battle opposing Nicholi Rogatkin and Brett Rheeder to culminate in the most epic fashion. Coming off wins in Innsbruck and Les Gets, Rogatkin was of course the only rider still in contention for the coveted and seemingly unattainable Triple Crown of Slopestyle, but the Crankworx World Tour ranking was also up for grabs. There were also a number of secondary story lines to keep an eye on, like the King of Crankworx title that Tomas Lemoine still had a shot at, as well as the return of Emil Johansson after a potentially career-ending medical situation and Thomas Genon battling to secure a spot on next year's tour. With so much going on, we knew we were in for a treat.

The lowest ranked rider in the finals, Emil Johansson was first to drop, and it looked like he hadn't been away from the sport for a week, let alone a year. He stomped his run with trademark style and his tears of joy at the finish line said it all - at one point, he wasn't sure he'd ever be able to ride a bike again, let alone compete on the world's biggest stage. He scored an 84.50 in his first run which saw him hold onto a podium spot for a long time (he would eventually finish 4th, even after improving to an 86.75 with his second run).

German rookie Erik Fedko impressed with combos and flow to secure his second ever Crankworx slopestyle podium, an incredible feat from such a young and relatively inexperienced rider. With more in the tank, it won't be long until this kid challenges for more. Tommy G had a couple of solid efforts, looking every bit as stylish as we know him on his way to 5th place and a 2019 tour invite, while Diego Caverzasi gets the "hard man of the day" award for riding with a broken thumb. Scoring controversy of the day has to go to Szymon Godziek who threw a lot of different types of tricks but saw his effort rewarded with just the 11th place - he then opted not to take his second run, for reasons unknown at the time of writing this.

All eyes on the top two then. Rogatkin threw down a run for the ages, linking his signature twister with a double backflip through the 4-pack, and signing off with a double tailwhip off the massive Kokanee finish line drop. He was pumped with his run which rewarded him with the first round lead after Brett Rheeder's charge came unstuck on that very last feature - attempting a flat drop backflip tailwhip, no less. Back to the top they went, and the script would soon be flipped. Rheeder laid down a perfect run, linking opposite and regular tricks like only he does, and getting redemption with perfect execution of that backflip tailwhip on the last hit. He moved ahead of Rogatkin by two points, and it was up to Rogatkin to try and take back the win with the very last run of the day. Incredibly, Rogatkin added flow and amplitude to his run, while also throwing extra combos in places where he had previously done single tricks, and came down to a finish line mobbing and an anxious wait for the scores to drop. 96.50 and the Triple Crown of Slopestyle was his! A fitting end to an incredible season that once again has seen the riders push the progression of this sport to levels we could previously only dream of. Video game producers around the world must be scratching their heads just about now!

We couldn't end this write-up without a shoutout to Ryan Nyquist, the BMX legend who turned his hand to MTB slopestyle just three short years ago, and who saw his efforts culminate with a podium finish at least year's Joyride. With BMX Park being an an olympic sport now, Nyquist is going to turn his focus back to the smaller wheels to try to make the US squad, and may well end up retiring from MTB slopestyle as a result. Thanks for the ride, Ryan, and good luck!

2018 Crankworx Joyride Results

  1. ROGATKIN Nicholi SPECIALIZED USA 92.75 96.50 96.50
  2. RHEEDER Brett TREK CAN 50.25 94.50 94.50
  3. FEDKO Erik ALEXRIMS GER 88.25 36.25 88.25
  4. JOHANSSON Emil TREK SWE 84.50 86.75 86.75
  5. GENON Thomas CANYON BEL 77.75 81.50 81.50
  6. VENCL Jakub ROSE CZE 72.00 63.50 72.00
  7. TESTA Torquato ROSE ITA 27.50 71.25 71.25
  8. JONES Matt MARIN GBR 68.50 56.50 68.50
  9. LEMOINE Tomas CANYON FRA 65.50 61.00 65.50
  10. KNOPF Lukas ROSE GER 62.25 59.75 62.25
  11. GODZIEK Szymon NS BIKES POL 61.00 0.00 61.00
  12. NYQUIST Ryan HARO USA 53.75 17.00 53.75
  13. CAVERZASI Diego RIRI ITA 41.25 32.75 41.25
  14. MESSERE Anthony ROSE CAN 32.75 27.00 32.75
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