words: T. Bird
photos: T. Bird and Mary Walsh
The ollie. It's one of the simplest and most timeless tricks on a snowboard, and one of few maneuvers that can portray style and skill with the utmost straightforwardness. As with many tricks in our culture, the ollie was derived from skateboarding, and although it is much easier to do on a snowboard, a proper ollie isn't all that easy. It takes time, practice and style, all things that cannot be learned overnight. That's why SNOWBOARDER Magazine partnered with adidas in order to bring two resorts a grassroots, inclusive event that anyone--from the kid who rides 6 days a year to 60 days a year--can strap in and drop into. Enter the adidas Snowboarding Over/Under, a high ollie and freestyle event that was hosted for the first time just a few weeks ago at Okemo Mountain in Vermont, while just last Saturday, on April 2nd, it came to Brighton, Utah and both were a smashing success.
Under sunny skies and high on-hill temps, the event kicked off at 11am with around 50 kids who had pre-registered at local and legendary SLC shop MiloSport the evening prior and the morning of. Jared Winkler, Mouse, and the Brighton Digger Crew set up an immaculate lane of corduroy for the kids to point it down and snap and adidas riders Keegan Valaika and Alex Sherman turned up to check out the action, alongside Chris Grenier, Harrison Gordon and Spencer Schubert. By 11:15, the action was heating up in the high ollie portion of the event. The idea is simple: Both the men and the women are given two tries to get over the starting height of the bar and if they fail to do so in said two tries they are eliminated. The ladies, Jennie Messer, Jill Perkins, Nirvana Ortanez, Laura Rogoski and Veroniqi Hansen, shined in the high ollie portion of the contest, but it was the aforementioned Jill who took the win ina heated final, winning a year's worth of adidas kicks. For the men, standouts included Alex Cato, James Wilson, Chris Frost, Jordan Duffy, Ezra Racine, Max Boileau and Aidan Daoussis, but when all was said and done, it was Andy Chamarro who leapt nearly four feet to take the top spot, along with $1,000, courtesy of adidas.
The second event is the "freestyle" portion, where the riders are required to go up and over the first bar in any fashion they deem fit, and then poke, tweak, butter or lay back underneath the second bar, and the event was judged by SNOWBOARDER's Pat Bridges and Jeff Baker, Grenier, Harrison, Spencer, Keegan, Alex and adidas' Evan LeFebvre, so they had their work cut out for them, as there were multiple contestants on course all at the same time, dropping relentlessly. Standouts included Ezra Racine, Chris Frost, Alex Cato, Andy Chamarro, James Wilson, Andrew Aldridge, Austin Breen and a handful of others, but it was Andrew Aldridge's combinations and overall dominance that handed him the win and $1,500. Coming closely in second place was Ezra, while James Wilson--one of the most consistent riders in the freestyle event--took third place. For the women, it was once again Jill Perkins who made a clean sweep of the event with the freestyle win to add to her high ollie title. Check out the gallery from the second-ever adidas Over/Under above, and be sure to keep an eye out for more of these in the future, because the Over/Under is an all-out on-hill bash! SNOWBOARDER would like to thank adidas, Brighton Resort and all the riders who came out to take their riding to new heights.
Women's High Ollie: Jill Perkins
Men's High Ollie: Andy Chamarro
Women's Overall Freestyle: Jill Perkins
Men's Overall Freestyle:
1. Andrew Aldridge
2. Ezra Racine
3. James Wilson