Who is Silje Norendal?
Name: Silje Norendal
Disciplines: Slopestyle, Big Air
2016/17 WST slopestyle ranking: 13th
2016/17 WST big air ranking: 8th
- 3-time X Games slopestyle gold medalist (Tignes 2013; Aspen 2014, 2015)
- 2017 X Games Norway big air gold medalist
- 2017 World Championships big air bronze medalist
Norendal entered the 2014 Winter Olympics as one of the top medal favorites in women's slopestyle, but once she got to Sochi, she struggled with an illness. After reaching the final, she placed just 11th.
The 24-year-old Norwegian could contend for a medal in both slopestyle and big air at the PyeongChang Games.
Norendal is capable of putting down technical slopestyle runs, particularly in the rail sections. Among the impressive jump tricks she has landed in competitions is a frontside rodeo 720 off the toes. A cab 900 helped her win big air gold at X Games Norway last season.
At age 4, Norendal and her mother began learning to snowboard together. The local resort was only 10 minutes away from their home in Kongsberg, Norway. Norendal entered her first competition about two years later.
In 2013, Norendal won slopestyle gold at the X Games competition in Tignes, France. It was the first major victory of her career, and it was particularly impressive because she had to outduel Jamie Anderson, the dominant slopestyle rider at the time, to get the win. That kickstarted a run of podiums for Norendal, including back-to-back wins at X Games Aspen in 2014 and 2015.
In slopestyle, Norendal only had one podium finish in international competitions in the two seasons after her last X Games victory in January 2015. Her 2017 season provided reason for optimism though, particularly in big air, for which she earned gold at X Games Norway and bronze at the world championships.
Off the snow
Had she not become a professional snowboarder, perhaps Norendal could have ended up at the summer Olympics as a handball player. She used to be an avid player of the sport when she was younger. Outside of sports, Norendal has participated in a number of photoshoots and has been featured in magazines.