SNOWBASIN -- Utah's own Louie Vito reasserted his dominance in the superpipe Saturday at Snowbasin, stringing together four consecutive double-cork tricks for the first time in Winter Dew Tour history on his way to a record-high score and back-to-back Dew Cups in the snowboard superpipe event.
Vito, an Ohio native who now lives in Sandy, trailed Russian phenom Iouri Podladtchikov (nicknamed "I-Pod") by a mere two points in the overall standings heading into Saturday's finals at the Toyota Championships. He earned a record-high 98.00 on his second run after pulling off four consecutive variations of double-cork tricks, which involve two full, head-over-heels flips.
Podladtchikov, battling pain from a recently broken nose, kept the race tight, but came up just short in a valiant effort that earned a score of 97.00.
"I-Pod's riding so well, he's so consistent and he definitely pushes me every time I snowboard," Vito said. "It was nice to be one and two with him going into the final stop, because it made me make sure I was on my game, and he definitely brought it for sure."
Facing the task of topping the highest score ever awarded, Podladtchikov put together a masterful final run of his own featuring a huge McTwist 1260 and back-to-back double corks, but couldn't quite overcome Vito's historic trip down the pipe.
"I'm really happy with my run," he said. "Louie taking it in the end, I'll give it to him. But the battle is on."
Podladtchikov finished second in the overall standings for the season, while 18-year-old Spencer Shaw of Stratton, Vt. rounded out the podium.
In the women's finals, Olympic gold medalist Kelly Clark overcame an impressive run by Gretchen Bleiler, perfectly sticking a front-side 1080 to win both the stage and the Dew Cup.
Coming into the final tour stop, Clark was at third place in the overall standings.
"I love walking the line between the possible and the impossible," she said.