Words: Pat Bridges
At Winter X Games ESPN and Disney debuted the Real Snow competition which was a multi faceted showdown combining social media, an onsite rail jam and the $50,000 main event that featured 8 hammer filled minute long edits which could each be counted as an ender within a conventional video part scenario. The catch was that these 8 edits could only be filmed from mid November to December 31st, 2010. This abridged window of riding opportunity isn't apparent in any of the final products.
With these 8 edits being both voted on by ESPN viewers over the course of a two week period and judged by esteemed industry insiders determining what would make the cut was decidedly tricky. Add to this the fact that the action would be captured during a period where most pros are in warm up mode and the stakes are multiplied. That said the rewards outweighed the risks with quality cash prizes on tap as well as the exposure usually reserved for pipe jocks and park savants.
The field for Real Snow could be described in one word: legit. Each of these 8 featured film pros has made their mark on the film part medium. Anchoring this crew of invitees were JP Walker and Jeremy Jones. These two have combined to reshape snowboarding in accordance to their strict vision on multiple occasions. Not the least of which is the fact that JP pioneered the double corks on display in the previous evening's Big Air. Seth Huot, and Simon Chamberlain rounded out the People contingent and added a depth of talent to the lineup. Dan Brisse, Louif Paradis, Joe Sexton and Nic Sauve each produced outstanding segments within the 2010 season and their momentum carried them into the mix and onto the computer screens of America.
While every edit could do much more than hold their own in the context of a complete video, some of the submissions separated themselves by being more progressive and dynamic than the rest of the pack. While any one of the top three contenders could have justifiably received the $50,000 prize it was Dan Brisse's high consequence filled film which emerged as the judges favorite. While Dan is decidedly richer, the real winner of Real Snow was the sport of snowboarding itself. ESPN has presented a side of snowboarding never before showcased within the context of mainstream media. By all accounts Real Snow turned out to be a real success. Also worth noting is the fact that none of the participants got broke off during the filming. This is incredible considering the one foot jibs, moving – moving truck cripplers, two story urban egg flips off light posts, switch multi kinks, and other nbds on display.
As for how the two lesser Real Snow segments played out, the onsite rail jam left a bit to be desired. An unfamiliar format and a truly gnarly setup wreaked havoc with some of the riders. Nic Suave, Louif Paradis and Simon Chamberlain ended the evening in first, second and third respectively with Sauve setting down trick after trick and earning a big check as well.
The reader voted elimination is still going on but it has come down to Nic Suave and JP Walker for that title.
SNOWBOARDER congratulates the riders and filmers who kept it real with Real Snow. Next year expect this portion of the X Games to be much bigger. We would say better but we are having trouble wrapping our heads around what the riders would have to do to fulfill on that promise.
Winter X Games 15 Real Snow Judged Edit Results
1 Dan Brisse
2 Louif Paradis
3 Nic Suave
Winter X Games 15 Rail Jam Results
1. Nic Sauve 85.00
2. Louis-Felix Paradis 68.00
3. Simon Chamberlain 64.00
4. Jeremy Jones 55.00
5. Seth Huot 55.00
6. Joe Sexton 42.00
7. JP Walker 34.00
Dan Brisse’s part:
Louif Paradis’ part:
Nic Suave’s part: