Last night, while most of us were getting tucked up in bed, 60 of the world's best riders were busy meat-hucking down at Snow Park NZ at the inaugural Burton High Fives slopestyle. Burton riders Mikkel Bang and Enni Rukajarvi ended up claiming the top spots (convenient eh?) walking away with a tasty $10,000 each. Prior to the events the riders took part in a variety of Kiwi-inspired off-snow team challenges that included skeet shooting, knife throwing and jet boat racing. Why they didn’t include sheep shearing we have no idea! Riders also took to the driving track for a time trial in Minis (any guesses as to which car company sponsored the event?), with the fastest team earning the privilege of choosing the start order for slopestyle and halfpipe.
Once back on snow, Mikkel stomped both of his runs, which included switch back 12’s, front double 10’s and rodeo 5 stale’s to claim the win, followed by Seb Toots who stuck back 10 double, front 10 double and double back rodeo and Stale Sandbech who threw a cheeky backside 1440 in his run. We’re guessing Mikkel’s run must have been huge and super clean for him to edge out Seb and Stale. Enni Rukajarvi’s winning run included a front 3 indy, back 5 and cab 5. A highlights video will hopefully follow shortly.
While competing for individual World Snowboard Tour points in slopestyle, riders were also representing 12 teams selected earlier in the week for the off-snow challenges. Points from those will be combined with with points from the slopestyle and halfpipe events and the top team will take home an extra $10,000 to divvy up between them - a nice fresh concept for a snowboard contest we reckon! The total prize purse of $80,000 is the largest to date in New Zealand apparently.
The halfpipe finals are set to go down tonight and don’t forget that you can watch them live on opensnowboarding.com tonight at 11.15pm UK time.
BURTON HIGH FIVES 2012 SLOPESTYLE RESULTS
1. Mikkel Bang (NOR) 2. Sebastien Toutant (CAN) 3. Stale Sandbech (NOR)
1. Enni Rukajarvi (FIN) 2. Christy Prior (NZL) 3. Ty Walker (USA)