Upon reviewing the opinions of the pros who voted for our 2021 Slush Awards, a pattern emerges. Despite our aspiration for these accolades to take a more empirical tone, there is no denying that for most of those polled, it all comes down to who had the season that they themselves wish they had produced. Yet, it’s hard to argue with the fact that Halcyon would be a very different film were it not for Sage’s style, charisma, work ethic and ability.
It’s easy for others to say what they would do given a chance to spend a winter in Kotsenburg’s boots, but it's another thing altogether to strap in and send it while grinding as the protagonist of a full project. Similarly, there is something very unique about Sage, with his purist's connection to riding culture and its institutions, as well as his mandate to take his own path. Two Rider Of The Year nods in as many seasons shows that whatever he is doing, it is working. It is also worth noting that Sage’s output as of late is starting to make his 2014 Sochi Olympic Slopestyle gold seem like little more than a milestone on his journey to ever greater accomplishments.