New Zealand’s winter and summer Olympic athletes had a huge weekend competing around the world, with a 17-year-old leading the charge on the snow.
PyeongChang bronze medallist Zoi Sadowski Synnott claimed the gold medal in Snowboard Slopestyle at X Games, backing up the silver medal she earned in Snowboard Big Air two days prior.
The 17-year-old was in Aspen for the prestigious invitation-only event, considered one of the pinnacle competitions in winter sport.
The second rider to drop in to the course, Sadowski-Synnott stomped her first run with back to back 900s and a double wildcat to score 90 points from a possible 100. Holding the top spot after run one Sadowski Synnott looked to tidy up her trick execution and was able to up her score to a 91 on run three.
“Words can’t even describe how I’m feeling. I managed to land a run I hadn’t done before in competition so I’m just really happy,” said Sadowski Synnott.
Her Olympic teammate Nico Porteous earlier claimed bronze in the men’s freeski halfpipe. Porteous landed his top score of 89.00 on his second run of three.
“It hasn’t really sunk in yet, I can’t quite believe it. This comes close to the feeling of an Olympic medal, X Games is such a prestigious event in skiers’ eyes, this is definitely up there,” said Porteous.
New Zealand’s track cyclists were also in action, claiming three medals at the UCI Track World Cup in Hong Kong.
Twenty-year-old riders Campbell Stewart and Tom Sexton produced a performance that belied their years to snatch an exciting victory in the Madison.
The New Zealand pair produced a withering final sprint to claim the double points to overtake Australia and win the gold medal.
It was the second medal of the World Cup for Stewart who earlier managed a podium placing in the omnium.
The women’s development team pursuit combination also managed a hard fought bronze medal.
The quartet of Ellesse Andrews, Michaela Drummond, Emily Shearman and Lauren Ellis produced a dominant display in their medal ride, clocking 4:21.331 to power home over France and secure the bronze.
Back home the New Zealand men’s and women’s rugby sevens teams competed at the Hamilton leg of the Rugby Sevens World Series.
The women’s team beat France 31-0 in the final to win the inaugural Fast Four Tournament.
Captain Tyla Nathan Wong said it was special to win at home and a dream come true for the side which lost captain Sarah Hirini to a leg injury on the first day.
"I'm glad at how well the girls hung out together, we were connected on defence," she said.
The men’s team placed third after being beaten 17-7 by the USA in their semi-final.
The New Zealand men’s and women’s Black Sticks were also in action, with both teams going down in hard-fought losses to the Netherlands in Auckland.
The men were initially down by 3 points but managed to draw level before a third-quarter strike from the Dutch saw them take a 4-3 win.
The New Zealand women were beaten 1-0 by the world No.1s, a 38th-minute goal to Maartje Krekelaar the difference between the two teams.PyeongChang 2018 Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games Olympic Winter Games Zoi Sadowski-Synnott Nico Porteous