The ski world was abuzz as Red Bull PlayStreets made its long-awaited return to Gastein, Austria. Over 10,000 spectators were treated to an incredible show as 21 of the planet’s top freeskiers put on a spectacular display of skill and creativity. The 400-metre-long slopestyle course included quarter pipes, road gaps, challenge rails, and even trampolines, giving the riders plenty of opportunities to showcase their abilities. In the end, it was 25-year-old American Nick Goepper who took home the title with an impressive run, featuring a leftside 900, a rightside 720, and a switch double cork. It was an unforgettable day for all involved and a reminder that freeskiing is back in a big way.
After an intense qualifying round, the top 16 riders squared off in the knockout format of Red Bull PlayStreets. Max Moffatt of Canada and Matěj Švancer of Austria were two of the standout performers, but it was Sweden’s freeskiing icon Jesper Tjäder and Swiss slopestyle prodigy Andri Ragettli who faced off in the finals, just as they had back in 2017. Tjäder was the first to go, dazzling the crowd with a Switch Flair on the KIA Quarterpipe into Misty 720 Reverse Mute Grab on the Big Air. He then followed it up with a Cork 540 up and 180 down the nine-metre-high Oakley Wallride, a Flat Spin over the Völkl Hip, and a 450 to Switch on the final rail section. Ragettli matched Tjäder’s performance with a Switch 720 on the KIA Quarterpipe into a Double Cork 1080 on the Big Air, then a Flair on the Oakley Wallride, a Flat 450 over the Völkl Hip, and a 450 Disaster on the final rail section. The judging was close, but in the end, Tjäder’s score of 285 was enough to earn him a second 1st place Red Bull PlayStreets title. “It’s just great to win here,” said Tjäder. “The atmosphere pushes you so hard and makes Red Bull PlayStreets unique. I’m stoked I won my second star.”
Red Bull PlayStreets 2023
1st Jesper Tjäder (SWE) – 285 points
2nd Andri Ragettli (SUI) – 282
3rd Kim Gubser (SUI) – 261
4th Matej Svancer (AUT) – 259