Sounds the the European Open is having some better luck with the weather this year. Kelly Clark and Kevin Pearce take top honors in the pipe. If you want more, here’s the whole release.
Laax, Switzerland – January 15th, 2009: Another spectacular battle ensued today in the Halfpipe at the 6Star Burton European Open. Again, 1000 Swatch TTR ranking points were on offer as well a big part of the total prize purse worth $125,000, motivating riders to up the ante. As in 2008, Kevin Pearce (USA) narrowly snatched victory from Shaun White (USA) moving him up to World No.4 on the Swatch TTR Ranking. White finished the competition in second, the Swiss local and fan’s favourite Iouri Podladtchikov in third. Also Kelly Clark (USA) repeated her victory from 2008 and claimed first place in the women’s Halfpipe battle. She now sits in World No. 9. Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas (NOR) and Paulina Ligocka (POL) took second and third place respectively.
A monster Halfpipe and blue bird conditions proved to be the perfect combination for the riders to lay down mind boggling tricks that pushed Halfpipe progression to unseen levels. 07/08 Swatch TTR World Tour Champion Kevin Pearce was looking to repeat his 2008 BEO Halfpipe victory, boosting large and spinning big with a stalefish to McTwist, followed by back-to-back 10s and a frontside 9. “It’s amazing to win this title a second year in a row and after not performing that well yesterday it’s good to get some TTR points today,” he said. White’s second place finish has put him into TTR World No.12, setting him up well for the rest of the season. Iouri Podladtchikov (SUI) came in third, jumping 26 positions into World No. 21 in the ranking.
Kelly Clark was doing what she does best – impressing the judges with her smooth style and solid tricks. Her winning run consisted of back-to-back 7s followed by back-to-back 5s, with a monster double overhead frontside air to finish it off. She has now moved up to World No.9 and was super stoked on the results “It’s great to do so well at a 6Star event here in Laax. I’ll be at all the big events and if I do well and jump up a few spots in the TTR that would be a great bonus for me,” stated Clark.
As predicted the Swatch TTR rankings now look very different with a number of key movers and shakers. Peetu Piiroinen (FIN) has moved into World No.2, continuing to narrow Chas Guldemond’s lead. Mason Aguirre (USA) stormed into the TTR Top 10 and now sits in World No. 8 while Finnish rider Markus Malin rounds out the TTR Top 5. Danny Davis (USA) and Antti Autti (FIN) performed well over both contests and are now both in the TTR Top 20 (World No. 13 and 14), eager to further improve their rankings.
Jamie Anderson still has some breathing room in Swatch TTR World No.1, however the other ladies are in hot pursuit. Sina Candrian (SUI) is behind her in World No. 2, followed closely by Kara Rennie (CAN) in three and Cheryl Maas (NED) in four. Sarka Pancochova (CZE) continued to climb the ranking today, moving into World No.7. Tailing her are today’s top finishers Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas in World No.8 and Kelly Clark in World No.9.
Season 08/09 is shaping up to the most tightly contested yet, with all the previous Tour Champions and new comers hungry for victory. Log on to www.go211.com to watch the replay from both days of competition and stay tuned to www.ttrworldtour.com for fresh videos, news, blogs, and rankings. The Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour is building momentum and the race continues January 17th 2009 at the 3Star Protest World Rookie Fest in Livigno, Italy, where the young guns will be looking to impress.