Snowboarding: 'Concussed' Zoi Sadowski-Synnott on her unexpected golden triumph

Kiwi snowboard star Zoi Sadowski-Synnott has revealed that concussion had ended her slopestyle hopes in Utah - but she's now the world champion.

The 17-year-old teen was declared the gold medal winner on Monday (NZ time), after the final was cancelled due to high winds and placings were determined by qualifying scores.

Sadowski-Synnott led the field through preliminaries, but had already withdrawn from the medal rounds when she heard the news of her victory.

"I hit my head," she told Newshub. "I wasn't going to compete, because I was concussed and I needed to rest.

"I was at home resting, when I heard the news I'd won, thanks to my qualifying runs.

"I was in the mindset that I'd come last in finals, so I'd accepted that and then I found out I'd won, so everyone was losing their minds.

"We had to get dressed in my gear real quick, and head out with my board and bib, which was funny."

During qualifying on Sunday, Sadowski-Synnott posted her winning score of 91.75 in her first run down the slope, but during the second, she hit her head and was diagnosed with concussion.

Sadowski-Synnott said she was feeling better, but still made the right decision to pull out of the decider.

"I woke up this morning and there were still signs that I was still not right, so we made the decision that I wasn't going to compete. Safety first, we didn’t want to risk anything.

Zoi Sadowski Synnott with other medal winners.
Zoi Sadowski Synnott (C) with Silje Norendal (L) and Jami Anderson (R). Photo credit: AAP

When I got home, after it had been delayed, I found out it was cancelled and I'd won, which was crazy.

Sadowski-Synnott finished ahead of Norway's Silje Norendal (88.75) in second, with American Olympic champion Jamie Anderson (87.25) third.

She was due to compete in big air qualifying - the event where she won Olympic bronze last year - but that was also cancelled due to high winds.

No winner was declared, as qualifying had not taken place.

Winning gold caps off a remarkable 12 months for the Wanaka teen, who has had a sudden rise to fame with success in many high-profile events.

She won her Olympic bronze, then just last month, she became the first Kiwi snowboarder to win X-Games gold in Aspen, along with a silver in big air at the same event.

"I felt some confidence coming off X Games after the win and the silver, so I was excited for this competition.

"The last year has been surreal. I came second at world champs two years ago in Spain.

"I can't compare it to the Olympics or X Games at the moment, but still fizzing about it." 

Sadowski-Synnott will rest for the next week before the US Open in Colorado later this month, followed by a World Cup meet at Mammoth Lakes, also in Colorado.

Then she'll return home to train for the New Zealand season.