Ross Powers and Hannah Teter each went home from Mammoth Mountain a few thousand dollars richer after Saturday’s Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix halfpipe finals. The second stop of this year’s Grand Prix went down under sunny blue skies at an early 9:30 am.
Twenty men and ten women qualified to compete in a best of two runs format. Park City Grand Prix first place finisher Hannah Teter was back in the women’s final—not surprisingly holding a first place qualifying position. While Teeter sat back waiting for her run, nine other women stepped up to challenge her spot collectively pulling 540′s and even a few 720′s. Molly Aguirre, Lindsay Jacobellis, Chanelle Sladics, Elena Hight, Kimberly Fasani, Kristen Fagan, and Clair Bidez all made huge efforts, but in the end Tricia Byrnes and Mercedes Nicoll were the closest to challenging Teter.
Not surprising Byrnes, Nicoll, and Teter were also the top three qualifiers. The first of the three to drop, Byrnes first run was clean and put her into first place with a smooth cab 540 and switch method for a 36.70. Nicoll went next and made the most of Mammoth’s lengthy pipe getting in ten hits stomping a backside 540 and a number of straight airs to score a 34.00. The score would be good enough to hold her through the second round in third place. Then came Teter—huge frontside 540 to McTwist with plenty of lofty airs—38.00 put her in first and no one ever caught up. The standings stood through the second runs and the event ended with Teter, Byrnes, and Nicoll on the podium.
The Men’s finals were a different story. Shaun White was noticeably MIA reportedly at the Volcom warehouse shooting skits for his upcoming film The White Album and maybe saving himself up for the X-Games. Without White there were plenty of riders looking to fill in the gaps. In the end it was two Olympic medalists —Ross Powers and Danny Kass in the one and three spots with Park City’s Grand Prix winner Andy Finch grabbing a second place finish. However, the standings didn’t come come as quickly as they did for the women.
After the first round, Mammoth local Chris Nelson was holding first with a 40 and Guillaume Morisset had second with his back to back 720, frontside 540 combo that gave him a 39.6. Tommy Czeschin, Luke Wynen, Lane Knaack, Mason Aguirre, Shane Pospisil, the Teter brothers Elijah and Abe, and a few others all had decent runs, but a shaded left wall and bumpy pipe gave even the best riders some trouble. Tyler Emond and Guy Deschesne were just two of the first round casualties.
The second round held a few surprises. Andy Finch pulled out into first place starting it off with a pair of severe sevens, an inverted frontside nine, and a McTwist. Joe Eddy and Elijah Teter followed but couldn’t muster up enough to compete. Then came Kass who bettered his earlier score spinning into a frontside seven, cab seven to frontside nine lien combo but it was only enough to grab second behind Finch. Last up was Powers launching his huge signature method air off the first hit into lofty frontside seven to cab seven combo, then whipping out a frontside nine and McTwist. “The walls were a little bumpy,” said Powers. “To put together that many hits in one run made it a challenging pipe, but I definitely like the long pipes—doing a lot of hits and everything—but it all worked out today.”
So, that capped it. Standing on the men’s podium were Powers in first, Finch in second, and Kass in third—except Kass never actually stood on the podium. Rumor is that he doesn’t go to the podium, pose for photos, or collect prize money in Grand Prix events.
Check out the video and call the runs for yourself.
Did Not Make Finals
Did Not Make Finals