Mac Forehand went into the men’s ski big air competition Sunday evening with one goal: landing the 2160. Going into his fifth run, it looked like he was going to win a silver medal just like he did in 2022.
However, everything changed for him when he landed the 2160 in his fifth run, earning a perfect score and a gold medal.
“I’ve been thinking about it for so long and to put it down means the world. I’m honestly speechless,” he said.
Forehand, out of Stratton, Vermont, nearly got a taste of the gold medal in his rookie year in 2022, but Alex Hall’s 2160 in the fifth run knocked Forehand into second place.
“I was stoked for him. He’s an insane skier,” he said of Hall, who placed seventh in this year’s big air competition.
Forehand scored a 47 in his second run, which combined with the 50 from his last run earned him a score of 97. In four out of five of his runs, he scored above a 40.
Despite having never tried landing a 2160 before, he decided to give it a go in his fourth run.
“That was my first time trying it,” he said. “I was extremely nervous.”
Even though he didn’t quite stick the landing on his first try, his second try all but made up for it and earned him the only perfect score of the men’s ski big air competition.
Forehand won the silver medal in men’s ski slopestyle on Saturday, which he described as “stress relief off his shoulders.” He said he went into the big air competition not caring how he placed, just wanting to do well and land his tricks.
“I didn’t expect to be sitting here right now with a gold medal around my neck. It feels crazy,” Forehand said.
Low scores were not an option for any athletes looking to medal. Canada’s Teal Harle, who won the bronze medal in 2022, was in first place after the first four runs with a strong score of 96. Birk Ruud, from Oslo, Norway, earned the bronze medal with a score of 92.
To reach Audrey Ryan, email her at [email protected].