Inside the X-Games : Montreal skater Annie Guglia competes with the best

Inside the X-Games : Montreal skater Annie Guglia competes with the best

Photos : X-Games, Elodie Salomon and Zorah Olivia
Words : Annie Guglia

Hi ! My name is Annie Guglia, I’m from Montreal, Canada, and last weekend, one of my childhood dreams came true : I skated in the X-Games !

I always enjoyed competitions for 2 reasons. First, that’s how I met most of my skate idols and friends worldwide. Second, contests force you to focus on the present moment if you really wanna do good and reach your goals (in my case, land all my tricks and do my very best !)

Annie Guglia – Boardslide into the bank (Photo : Zorah Olivia)

Annie Guglia – Feeble to fakie (Photo : Zorah Olivia)

So this weekend, I was blessed with the opportunity to skate women skateboard street qualifiers for X-Games 2017 in Minneapolis ! It was an awesome first experience ! When I saw the stadium, my first reflex was to google « how many people fit in US Bank Stadium ». The answer is 66 655 people. It’s as big as Montreal’s Olympic Stadium !

X-Games Minneapolis had 4 different courses (Street, Park, Dirt and Mega Ramp) and held 3 sports (Motocross, BMX and Skateboard).

For Women Skateboard Street, top 5 of the qualifiers had the chance to skate in finals with 3 medalists from last year at X-Games Austin (Pamela Rosa, Mariah Duran and Lacey Baker), plus 4 « Alliance picks » (Leticia Bufoni, Samarria Brevard, Alexis Sablone and Vanessa Torres).

Aori Nishimura, Gabi Mazetto, Julia Brueckler, Hayley Wilson and Meagan Guy  made top 5 in qualifiers, and Lacey Baker unfortunately rolled her ankle in practice, so Kate Shengeliya replaced her.

Aori Nishimura – Crooked grind (Photo : Elodie Salomon)

Finals were SO intense ! The girls only had two 45 seconds runs to make it to the podium. Against all thoughts, Leticia, Mariah and Samarria’s first runs didn’t go as well as expected, whereas Aori landed her whole run, including a crooked grind on the 8 stairs rail and a huge gap to fs lipslide, scoring 87 ! Meagan and Hayley, the two rookies, also started off with almost perfect runs !

Leticia Bufoni – Kickflip backside lipslide (Photo : Zorah Olivia)

For their second runs, Aori came back with the exact same winning run, leading her in first place ! Leticia also had a great second run, including a beautiful backside lipslide on the 8 starts rail, and an impressive try of a fs 180 over the drakar which was worth bronze to the judges.

My favorite moment of the finals was Samarria’s second run. After getting hurt in the first seconds of her first run on a 50-50 pop over, she came back strong with her second run, landing the 50-50, kickflipping into a euro gap, and aiming straight to the 8 starts to stomp a huge 360 flip second try, 2 seconds before the end of her run ! It was so intense that I cried and lost my voice screaming !

Samarria Brevard – 360 flip (Photo : X-Games)

Mariah Duran didn’t make podium this year, but she still killed it ! She started strong with a fs feeble on the A-Frame, landed a textbook hardflip over the euro gap and attempted to kick front board the A-Frame, but unfortunately time ran out before she landed. She will be at Jackalope this year so if you don’t know who she is, check her out !!

Mariah Duran – Hardflip (Photo : Elodie Salomon)

Here are the final results for Women Skateboard Street Finals :
 

  1. Aori Nishimura
  2. Samarria Brevard
  3. Leticia Bufoni
  4. Pamela Rosa
  5. Alexis Sablone
  6. Julia Brueckler
  7. Meagan Guy
  8. Hayley Wilson
  9. Vanessa Torres
  10. Mariah Duran
  11. Gabi Mazetto
  12. Kate Shengeliya

 

For my part, I got 9th in the qualifications. I didn’t make the cut for finals, but thinking I was supposed to be alternate, the simple fact that I got to enter the contest was already a win and made the whole experience better before it even started! My parents and my girlfriend came to see me, I learned a lot, I enjoyed every second of the week, and with luck, but mostly hard work, I hope I’ll get invited again next year ! Until then, see you all at JACKALOPE !

Cheers, X-Games !

Annie Guglia

Annie Guglia