AKE WANAKA, New Zealand (August 12, 2009) Heavy snowfall and limited
visibility delayed the start of the second day of the seventh annual Burton
New Zealand Open, but the riders and course crew overcame the challenging
conditions with a full day of competition. It was no small task as over 70
men and 35 women from 16 countries were slated to take to Cardrona Alpine
Resort¹s newly sculpted slopestyle course, each vying for a highly coveted
spot in Friday¹s semifinal competition.
The men were first to drop into the 800m-long course featuring up and
downrails, boxes, three kickers and a unique upstair feature to quarterpipe.
Top scoring qualifier, Atsushi Ishikawa (JPN) kicked off his first place
finishing run with a frontside boardslide sameways 270 out on the downrail,
followed by a 50/50 180 out on the box, busting a big Cab 720 indy off the
first kicker, followed by a switch backside 900 mute, into a backside 720
melon, followed by a 50/50 on the uprail, finishing with a backside 50/50 on
the quarter pipe coping, to a 50/50 on the flatdown.
Following the men¹s competition, a thick fog rolled in making things more
difficult for the women as they were lined up and ready to go for their turn
in the course. 35 women were to take two runs through the course, the best
score counting, however Mother Nature had other plans and the women were
only able to take their first run. Friday morning will see the continuation
of today¹s women¹s slopestyle qualifications, followed by men¹s and women¹s
semifinal and final competitions.
Those men and women advancing on to semifinals and finals will compete
against riders like Torstein Horgmo (NOR), Chas Guldemond (USA), Antti Autti
(FIN), Takaharu Nakai (JPN), Mitchell Brown (NZL), Danny Davis (USA), Peetu
Piiroinen (FIN), Tim Humphreys (USA) and Sebastien Toutant (CAN), Chanelle
Sladics (USA), Cheryl Maas (NED), Jamie Anderson (USA), Lisa Wiik (NOR),
Sarka Pancochova (CZE), Shelly Gotlieb (NZL), Silvia Mittermuller (GER),
Sina Candrian (SUI) and Spencer O¹Brien (CAN).
The NZ Open action continues tomorrow with men¹s and women¹s halfpipe
qualifications. Cardrona Alpine Resort is the home to the only 22¹ halfpipe
in New Zealand, which is the same size pipe that will be featured at the
2010 Winter Olympics.
Burton would like to thank Cardrona Alpine Resort, Go211.com, Speight¹s
Summit Golden Lager, Juice TV, The Edge FM, Anon Optics, High Cascade
Snowboard Camp, Nature Valley, goodbars.co.nz, Joe¹s Garage, SolRX, McKenna,
Smirnoff Ice Double Black and Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour for their
support of the New Zealand Open.
If you can¹t make it to New Zealand, watch the semi-finals and finals live
on Go211.com, where webcasts and highlights of the competitions will also be
available for on-demand viewing once the event is over.
Slopestyle Qualifications Men
1 Atsushi Ishikawa JPN
2 Sergey Tarasov RUS
3 Christian Haller SUI
4 Tore Holvik NOR
5 Arthur Longo FRA
6 Sage Kotsenburg USA
7 Eric Beauchemin USA
8 Gjermund Braaten NOR
9 Johann Baisamy FRA
10 Jye Kearney AUS