Freestyle Finals are setJustin Hoyer's super-sick trademark Tsunami off the BAR jump served as the centerpiece of the top-scoring run in the Freestyle Elimination round this afternoon.
Hoyer's score of 91.33 earned him the top seed for tonight's four-man final, while Joe Parsons and Heath Frisby tied for second (89.66) and Daniel Bodin locked up the final slot with an 85.66. In the finals tonight, it's friend against friend as Hoyer faces off with Bodin in one head-to-head semifinal and Parsons vs. Frisby battle in the other. Based on just one run in the bracket format tonight, winners advance to the gold medal final while the losers enter the bronze medal final.
Levi LaVallee went for broke in his second Elimination run, flipping the BAR jump to start and then wrecking spectacularly while going for a seat-grab backflip. He finished fifth - just off the bubble for the finals.
"Honestly I came in with no expectations. I had tricks my dialed, but I wasn't coming in with something super new. So I just wanted to throw down what I had and I knew if I did that I'd probably end up in a good spot. But I didn't expect this at all. I'm pumped and having fun."
"I've got a lot of respect for Levi. He's a tough son of a bitch. And he did so many events this weekend, it's just crazy. He's super-talented and it's a shame he didn't make the finals, but, man, I think maybe he's a little bit wore out and tired and I wouldn't blame him one bit considering."
"I'm just going to lay my cards down again like I did, and see how I stack up. Probably gonna try and take a nap now, get something to eat, and take some DayQuil because I'm still sick as a dog. But I've only got two more runs to do, and then it's home free."
"You can definitely see who's been out and training really hard. Our whole group trained so hard for this, I trained so hard. I made a couple little bobbles on my first run, but you pull it back together and you just keep going."
"I went into this wanting to be number one out of qualifying. I was off that mark by one point or something, and I wanted to get that on my second run, but with the wind picking up and a few mistakes, it made that more difficult. But I'm going to come out swinging in the next round and do everything I can to get into that gold medal round. I've never made it there and I want to more than ever now."
"Joe's gonna come uncorked, I'm gonna come uncorked. Both of us, we want to go the finals. We're really good friends, but we both just want to make it into that final round. That's all I've ever wanted, to make it into that final round, ever since the first time I ever watched Travis Pastrana win X games. That's all I've ever wanted, to win a gold medal, and that's what I want tonight."
LEVI LAVALLEE: "I took two gnarly, gnarly spills -the double backflip and then just now on a seat grab flip. Them are a couple of the hardest hits I've taken in my life. And to walk outa here with just some bruises and a tweaked ankle and stuff, it's a good day."
"I came into this X Games with one thing in mind: I came in to do the double backflip. And I put so much effort into that that I know it took away from my Freestyle and SnoCross a little. It kind of bums me out doing the Freestyle and knowing that I wasn't as prepared as I would've liked to have been. I had a seat grab flip that I was working in the foam pit-but it was only for a day that I worked on it. So I came out today and was kind of feeling it out and doggone missed the grab handle and it ended pretty bad. But hey, I'm moving and I would definitely do it the same again."
"I even changed my run for the second one because I hadn't flipped the big [BAR] ramp yet; not even in practice. So I went out, 'OK, I'm gonna flip the big ramp and try to poke out a nice seat grab flip.' And I figured if I could get in two more hits like my first run and all my other tricks were clean, I thought maybe I'd have a chance to edge out Bodin for the last qualifying spot. And things were going good, I felt really good about the first part of my run, flipped the big dog super smooth and then went for the seat grab flip and sure enough missed the grab handle."
"Gosh, you're going to see absolute madness tonight in the finals. These guys are all going so huge. This is their main focus so they're able to train and work solely on their tricks. And they've all got crazy new tricks from last year. And that's what's awesome. These guys are really pushing the limits of what can be done on a sled and it's amazing to watch."