Kiwi Olympic snowboarder Zoi Sadowski-Synnott has opened the first slopestyle competition of the season in style.
The 19-year-old claimed silver at the LAAX Open FIS Slopestyle World Cup overnight in Switzerland, finishing less than two points behind winner Jamie Anderson (USA).
Incremental weather and a variable headwind affected the FIS Slopestyle World Cup season opener and resulted in many of the women's field struggling to find their feet for their first run.
But Sadowski-Synnott took the weather in her stride and put down the first clean run of the event with a technical and impressive first run that put her comfortably in first position.
Sadowski-Synnott's first run consisted of a 50/50 on, 270 off on the first rail feature, a 50/50 to front board slide on the waterfall rail, a boardslide to 450 under flip on the pole jam, a cab 540 under flip on the quarter pipe, frontside 720 mute on jump one, a backside 720 on jump two and a frontside 180 in with a switch backside 540 out of the final creative snow feature, nicknamed the birdbath.
Speaking on the All Sport Breakfast with D'Arcy Waldegrave, Sadowski-Synnott said the boardslide to 450 under flip on the pole jam was her proudest trick.
"I had learnt that during the NZ season, we had a pipe set up at Cardrona and I was training really hard and to be able to put that in a slopestyle round was one of my goals," she said.
"None of the other girls were doing it so gave me a point of difference."
She said the trick took many hours over six months to perfect.
"You have to get over the first nerves of landing a new trick then once you get it, the repetition comes with the amount of time you send on the snow on a certain feature," she said.
Sadowski-Synnott went all out for her second run but explained that she had "too much juice" coming into the quarter pipe causing her to land deep on the quarter pipe and wash out, resulting in a crash score for her second run.
Snowboarding powerhouse Jamie Anderson (USA) put down a solid second run, including a double cab 900, to squeeze Sadowski-Synnott out of the gold medal position by less than two points. Tess Coady (AUS) rounded out the podium in third.
Sadowski-Synnott explained how this season would be like no other.
"With the uncertainty around the number of events that are going to happen, you're really dropping in every time like it's your last competition, you never know when the next one is going to be," she said.
Next up for Sadowski-Synnott is the prestigious Aspen Winter X Games taking place over the 29th – 31st of January in Colorado, USA.