Billy Morgan on his way to boardercross gold (Motion Stoppers)

Winter Olympic big air bronze medallist has celebrated his 30th birthday in style at The BRITS today by taking out the men’s boardercross for the second time in three years.

Qualifying with the second-fastest time, the 2017 champion won through to the final and was up against competitors specialising in the discipline.

However Morgan showed that his class in the air can be replicated on ground level, powering to victory ahead of Liam Dobson and Rory Ewart.

“It was pretty good fun – I had a great time,” said Morgan.”I was really disappointed I didn’t make it last year but I genuinely didn’t think I’d have what it takes to cut it this year.

“The final was pretty intense – I didn’t want to look back! I knew if I looked back I’d scrub a bit of speed of and be taken over so I had to stay 100% concentrated to the end.

“I could hear them coming up behind me and I got a little bit rumbled in the last corner, took a board to the shin but somehow managed to make it out alive and across the finish line.”

In the ladies’ final, Maisie Hill (pictured) replicated her form from 2018 by defending her BRITS boardercross crown.

Another athlete who specialises in the freestyle disciplines and was a repeat visitor to the 2018 BRITS podium, Hill qualified almost six seconds faster than her nearest competitor and went on to easily win the final ahead of Cerys Allen and Natalie Good.

Speaking after the race, Hill was happy to defend her title and has her sights set on more glory later in the week.

“It was actually a great course, you needed a lot of skill to get over it – I really liked it,” said Hill. “I just pulled out of the gate and went fast! It’s always good, you never know who’s behind you so you just go as fast as you can.

“I’m really looking forward to slopestyle on the last day – that’s what I’m here for.”

Some up-and-comers and experienced campaigners featured strongly in some of the age competitions: young gun Mia Brookes took out the female under-12s, GB Park & Pipe programme manager Lesley McKenna won the ladies masters, while snowboarding legend Ed Leigh ended up on the men’s masters podium alongside GB Park & Pipe snowboard coach Jack Shackleton.

LEFT Billy Morgan wins boardercross gold from Liam Dobson (2nd, left) and Rory Ewart (3rd, right); RIGHT Maisie Hill goes back-to-back to defend her title with Cerys Allen (left) in second place.

Snowboard action continues at The BRITS tomorrow with the Picture Big Air while the ski cross medals will also be decided.

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