Left 9. Double McTwist 1260. Switch double.

You don’t need to know what the heck these tricks are called to be in total awe of them

Halfpipe skier Matt Margetts of B.C. competes at Whistler last July. Photo credit: Jonathan Hayward/CP

Halfpipe skier Matt Margetts of B.C. competes at Whistler last July. Photo credit: Jonathan Hayward/CP

Here are some terms you’ll soon be hearing a lot in about: Double-cork 12. Double McTwist 1260. Switch double. Frontside double-cork 1440. Flat 360. Left 9.

Got it? Well, probably not.

The beauty of halfpipe skiing and snowboarding is you don’t need to know what the heck these tricks are called to be in total awe of them. And you will be in awe when you see skiers and snowboarders pull these moves off as they fly the equivalent of about four storeys in the air.

Among Canada’s medal hopefuls in ski halfpipe is Edmonton’s Mike Riddle, the 27-year-old who took silver at the US Grand Prix last weekend and won the overall world cup title last year. Riddle is also the 2011 world champion.

He was kind enough to take Sportsnet through a verbal explanation of the double-cork 12, which he’ll be doing back-to-back if all goes according to plan in Sochi.

“Double-cork 12 is taking off forwards and landing forwards with three and a half spins and two flips,” Riddle says.

If it’s still hard to picture, that’s because it sounds impossible.

Watch Riddle pull this trick off (along with a few others).

The men’s Olympic ski halfpipe is set for Tuesday, Feb. 18, at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park.

For more on the countdown to Sochi, check out Kristina Rutherford from Sportsnet




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