Peetu Piiroinen finally stood on the top spot of an Air & Style podium on Saturday, beating a field of the world's best contest riders to win the Nike 6.0 Air & Style Munich. Halldor Helgason stomped a backside 1080 double cork, before trying his insane new trick (the Lobster flip?) a couple of times but failing to stick it. Still, his first run was enough to put him in third. Belgium's Seppe Smits stomped an almost identical run to Peetu's - a cab 1260 followed by a boardslide 270 out on the down rail at the bottom - and missed out on the top spot by less than two points. Meanwhile Nils Arvidsson, who had made his second Air & Style final in a week, again failed to stomp his trick, leaving him in fourth. A nonetheless impressive result which marks the young Swede's arrival as a serious force in contest riding. Hit more to see the full results and the full gallery of sick shots.
Backed by Nike 6.0, the organisers had spared no expense in bringing the Air & Style back to Munich, putting on a seriously spectacular show that ran like clockwork - from the massive BMW motorbikes ferrying the riders up to the top of the kicker to the bands starting and finishing exactly on cue.
With some 15,000 fans in the audience, the atmosphere was incredible - every time local hero Ethan Morgan dropped, there was a roar worthy of any football match. Some spectators even had scarves with his name stitched into them to wave!
This was snowboarding on a serious, stadium-sized scale, and the riders rose to the occasion, with everyone going huge and landing deep off the kicker. When you have Sage 'cab 1440 double cork' Kotsenburg being knocked out in the first round by Ulrik 'Mr 1620' Badertscher, you know there's some serious shit going down.
There were a fair few giant killing in the early rounds, with Ethan knocking out Iouri Podlatchikov, and Seppe Smits doing for Mason Aguirre. In fairness Mason, who'd been ill the day before, still seemed a bit off colour, and couldn't really land his techest tricks - eventually opting to throw a classically styled 540 off the kicker on his final run.
Seb Toots was also feeling a bit rough, having nailed himself (and apparently broken a rib or two) in practise the day before. Not that that stopped him from riding however - with the help of a couple of cortisone injections he made it as far as the second round before being beaten by a sweet run by the on-form Nils Arvidsson.
Werni Stock, who'd kicked things off with a ma-hoosive double backflip on his presentation run, was riding especially well, holding off the relentless onslaught from his friend and fellow Zillertaller Peter Konig in round one, before narrowly losing out to Halldor. The younger Helgason's new trick was definitely the talk of the competition - and the focus of a lot of the media attention - at the end of the night. But by rights, the night was Peetu's. Proving once again that he is a world beater, Peetu gave a masterclass in consistency through all the rounds, going huge off the kicker and landing bolts every time.
NIKE 6.0 AIR & STYLE MUNICH - RESULTS
1 Peetu Piiroinen FIN 93.07
2 Seppe Smits BEL 91.60
3 Halldor Helgason ISL 77.60
4 Nils Arvidsson SWE 37.00
5 Sebastien Toutant CAN 88.00
6 Ethan Morgan GER 83.67
7 Ulrik Badertscher NOR 38.07
8 Werner Stock AUT 78.27
9 Markku Koski FIN 82.53
10 Christian Haller SUI 78.07
11 Sage Kotsenburg USA 76.13
12 Iouri Podladtchikov SUI 74.20
13 Peter König AUT 71.27
14 Markus Malin FIN 67.53
15 Mason Aguirre USA 52.74
16 Janne Korpi FIN 37.40