Kelly Clark vs.
"There's been a game of leapfrog going on for years," says U.S. snowboarding coach Bud Keene, describing the competition between the top two American women. Since 2003, Gretchen Bleiler (left in photo) has collected four golds and one silver at the Winter X Games. Since 2004, Kelly Clark has three golds, three silvers and a bronze. Clark won gold at the 2002 Winter Olympics; Bleiler scored silver in 2006; Clark took bronze in 2010. "Instead of getting complacent and timid, these two get more fierce," Keene says. In fact, Bleiler was the first woman to land a Crippler and a McTwist, while Clark is the only woman who routinely hits a 1080 in competition. Both attempt the toughest tricks in big contests, even if a fall means certain loss. This past winter, Clark went on an unprecedented run, winning 16 halfpipe events in a row. If anyone appreciated that feat, it was Bleiler, who has been there every trick along the way.