Longville, MN (January 31, 2017) – Buttermilk Mountain in beautiful Aspen, Colorado has been the host of the Winter X Games since 2002. For 2017, the Winter X Games welcomed back the return of Snowmobile Best Trick, Freestyle, and Snocross. Team LaVallee’s Kyle Pallin (pro) was invited to compete in snocross, while Levi LaVallee dedicated his time to focus on one event, snowmobile freestyle.
Thursday was Day 1 of the Winter X Games 2017 and snocross was one of the opening events. In this year’s snocross event, the race structure had changed. Two heats were ran, the top 4 riders were taken from each heat and placed into the front row of the 8-rider final. No last chance qualifier and no back row for the final. Pallin had solid practice and seeding times, and was eager for his qualifier. After having two red-flags in Pallin’s qualifier races and two restarts, Pallin was hoping the third restart was his lucky charm. Unfortunately, off of the short start and tight first turn corner, Pallin’s shock was rubbed with another riders sled, causing Pallin’s shock to blow and unable to finish the qualifier round, leaving Pallin without the chance for the snocross final.
In Freestyle, Levi LaVallee was looking for redemption. It has been four years since LaVallee has been able to compete in snowmobile Freestyle and LaVallee put all of his time and focus into this one event. Eight riders were competing for a medal and with two runs of 75 seconds each, LaVallee’s first run was good, but not good enough. For round two, LaVallee knew he needed to put down a solid run in order to finish within the top spots and LaVallee did just that. In the 75 seconds allowed, LaVallee was able to get seven tricks in and with the anticipation to see his score, LaVallee’s second run scored a 90 and secured himself a with a bronze medal. This is LaVallee’s 11th X Games medal. Congratulations Levi!
“This bronze medal really means a lot to me. I have been out of the X Games the past few years, due to injury – so it feels great to be back! However, this medal was not earned by just me but by my whole team. Our mechanics put in tons of extra time on my sled to get it ripping at the higher altitude, and if my sled wasn’t running up to par, then I know I wouldn’t have been able to have the confidence to do the run I did. Thank you guys for your endless effort and help in achieving this bronze medal!” – Levi LaVallee
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