Who is Marcus Kleveland?
Name: Marcus Kleveland
Disciplines: Slopestyle, Big Air
2016/17 WST slopestyle ranking: 3rd
2016/17 WST big air ranking: 3rd
- 2017 X Games slopestyle gold medalist
- 2017 X Games big air silver medalist
- 2016/17 Air & Style series champion
Kleveland has not previously competed at a Winter Olympics. PyeongChang would be his first appearance.
Of all snowboarders, the ascendant Norwegian has one of the best shots to win multiple gold medals in PyeongChang. The first rider to ever land a quad cork 1800 in a big air competition, Kleveland is a threat in both slopestyle and big air thanks to his ever-expanding array of mind-blowing tricks. A strong Canadian team led by Mark McMorris and Max Parrot will be one of his top obstacles.
The sky's the limit for Kleveland, who is already stomping some of the sport's biggest tricks. One of the most progressive riders in snowboarding right now, he was the first to land a quad cork 1800 in big air and will surely continue to push the envelope. He also boasts a very technical rail game, which means he can go toe-to-toe with just about anyone in slopestyle. And though it's not something he'd put into a contest run, he's become well-known for posting clips of some insane knuckle and flatground tricks on his Instagram feed.
Growing up in the Norwegian town of Dombas, Kleveland was able to hone his skills on both skis and a snowboard at a young age. After going back and forth between the two, which he's still capable of doing, he ended up focusing on snowboarding and was quickly picking up some of the sport's most progressive tricks. By age 11, he had already landed double corks. It became clear that a snowboard prodigy was emerging when, in 2013, video came out of Kleveland landing a triple cork.
In 2013, 13-year-old Kleveland became the youngest rider to land a triple cork. The video of that trick sent shockwaves through the snowboard world, as it was clear that big things were on the horizon. Four years later, while competing in big air at X Games, he took the next step by becoming the first snowboarder to land a quad cork in a contest.
2016/17 season recap
A breakout campaign for Kleveland, the 2016/17 season was proof that he had made the leap from exciting young prodigy to podium contender. The pinnacle of the season came at X Games Aspen, where he captured a silver medal in big air and a gold medal in slopestyle in the span of three days. The slopestyle win marked the first major victory of his career in that discipline, but he didn't fare quite as well at the event's European edition (known as X Games Norway) two months later, finishing fifth in both slopestyle and big air. Kleveland's other big accomplishments last winter included winning the overall title for the Air & Style series and earning a bronze medal for big air at the world championships.
Off the snow
As with many snowboarders, Kleveland keeps himself busy with other action sports. Skateboarding and motocross riding are among his preferred summer activities.