Men's Readers' Choice Presented by Toyota
While the rest of Riders' Poll awards are decided by each nominee's peers in professional snowboarding, the Readers' Choice award is dictated by the fans. Those of you who eagerly read, watch and consume snowboarding, day in and day out. The Readers’ Choice awards are the peoples’ choice, and this year, you have decided that Tommy, Halldór, Kazu, Stale, and Austen are the 2018 nominees for this prestigious award.
This is the first year the young Tommy Gesme has made this list, and it's exciting to see a name that's circulated in snowboarding's inner circles for years finally seeing the recognition he deserves. Gesme's signature project with adidas, blender, demonstrates his unique approach to street riding. Tommy is part of snowboarding's New Wave.
Few riders possess the international acclaim that Halldór Helgason has. He is a professional snowboarder in the truest sense of the term but maintains the looseness that makes snowboarding what it is. With a style all his own, he puts down never-been-done tricks every season. His antics and flare have developed a fan following rare in modern snowboarding, so it's no surprise to see the previous Readers' Choice winner nominated again.
Kazu Kokubo has undoubtedly established one of the most successful careers in professional snowboarding, by all measures. As a rider who made a name for himself in the halfpipe, Kokubo has always been exceptional at riding natural terrain, but this season marked a new height for Kokubo, as he directed and starred in a signature project called Kamikazu that showed viewers some of the best backcountry freestyle riding ever documented.
Stale Sandbech is a worldwide terrain park assassin. The Norwegian can handle the most massive of wedges with ease, and his park prowess is being well-documented by his personal filmer in Sandbech's vlog series StaleLIFE, which follows Stale through not just jump lines, but his travels as well, offering viewers a glimpse into the daily life of an international pro.
Austen Sweetin is young but he's been around, and like many of the finer things in life, he only gets better with age. This season was a big one for Sweetin. After having been a supporting cast member in Travis Rice's Depth Perception, Sweetin took the reins on his own project this season, directing and starring in a film called High Octane, this time with Travis stepping into the supporting role. It appears it was appreciated by the people, as evidenced by his place on this list.