WANAKA, New Zealand (14th August, 2010)

The eighth annual Burton New Zealand Open Halfpipe finals took place under blue bird skies today at Cardrona Alpine Resort with Iouri Podladtchikov (SUI) taking first place in the men’s event and Kelly Clark (USA) winning the women’s competition. Podladtchikov and Clark both finished the day NZ$6,000 richer for their efforts and set themselves up nicely with solid early season results counting towards the 2010/11 Burton Global Open Series and the Swatch TTR World Rankings.

Although the weather was perfect, warm temperatures meant the competition format had to be shortened, in order to keep Cardrona’s 22-foot Olympic sized halfpipe in top shape. All 38 men and 19 women semi-finalists went straight into a single final round, with the best of two runs counting for their final ranking.

The women were up first, and Kelly Clark threw down the gauntlet on her first run with a giant frontside air, backside 540 mute, frontside 900, method air, frontside 720, and Cab 720 mute for 88.70 points and her 2nd consecutive NZ Open halfpipe title. Kelly was very happy with her win saying, “I had a great day, it’s a great way to start off my season and I was really happy with how I rode today. I walked away doing the tricks I set out to do and had a lot of fun.”

Queralt Castellet (ESP) was the closest challenger with 82.45 points, also on her first run. Queralt’s run started with a backside 540 mute, frontside 540 melon, method air, and frontside 720 to place second. Taking third with 76.84 points was veteran Soko Yamaoka (JPN), who’s run consisted of a McTwist, frontside 720, Cab 720, frontside 540 melon, and backside 540. Kendall Brown was the top New Zealander, finishing in 8th place.

14 year-old Taku Hiraoka (JPN), who dominated the pre-qualifiers and qualifiers, continued to amaze with his first run score of 89.35 points setting the benchmark. Hiraoka’s run was a backside 540, frontside inverted 720, Cab 1080, and massive frontside 900 tailgrab. This Cinderella story proved that it’s possible to ride all the way from the pre-qualifier round through to the podium and second place. But taking the win was Iouri Podladtchikov (SUI) who let out all stops on his second run with a huge crippler, double McTwist 1260, frontside 1080 tailgrab, and Cab 720 for an impressive 93.70 points. Louie Vito (USA) also had a strong second run to jump up into third place with 88.04 points. Louie’s run started with a frontside 1080 double-cork, Cab 1080 double-cork, double crippler, backside 900, and frontside corked 900.

It was also a monumental day for judging, with the newly developed Snowboard Live Scoring system (SLS) proving itself for the first time in the halfpipe. Scores are given for each individual hit during a run, as well as a flow score, to provide a very transparent and informative final score. Viewers of the live webcast on GO211.com were able to see this system in action and watch real-time ranking changes, among other features of the webcast.

Check the Slopestyle results and photos HERE

Final Result Halfpipe Men

1 Podladtchikov Iouri SUI Zürich 1988 VOLCOM F 93.70

2 Hiraoka Taku JPN Gozeshi 1995 SALOMON F 89.35

3 Vito Louie USA Sandy 1988 O MATIC F 88.04

4 Aono Ryo JPN Matuyamasi 1990 YONEX F 87.84

5 Thomas Jarret USA Golden 1981 OAKLEY F 84.92

6 Pietropoli Manuel ITA Lonato 1990 BURTON F 81.32

7 Tsutsumi Shoto JPN Hamamatu 1991 YONEX F 78.76

8 Sandbech Stale NOR Oslo 1993 OAKLEY F 75.50

9 Brown Mitchell NZL Wanaka 1987 RIPCURL F 74.52

10 Murakami Daisuke JPN Sapporo 1983 K2 F 73.65

11 Haller Christian SUI Zernez 1989 BURTON F 73.28

12 Sato Shuhei JPN Asahikawa 1987 686 F 73.12

Final Result Halfpipe Women

1 Clark Kelly USA West Dover 1983 BURTON F 88.70

2 Castellet Queralt ESP Sabadell 1989 F 82.45

3 Yamaoka Soko JPN Nagano 1974 NOVEMBER F 76.84

4 Farrington Kaitlyn USA Bellevue 1989 GNU F 74.24

5 Okada Rana JPN Ohstu 1991 BURTON F 73.72

6 Sadar Cilka SLO Ljubljana 1991 BURTON F 69.70

7 Haug Linn NOR Trondheim 1990 BURTON F 65.44

8 Brown Kendall NZL Mount 62.60


1989 ROXY F

9 Iijima Ryoko JPN Saitamaken 1980 MOSS F 59.40

10 Oe Hikaru JPN Toyama 1995 FTWO F 59.25

11 Haller Ursina SUI Zernez 1985 K2 F 57.28

12 Mittermueller Silvia GER München 1983 RIDE F 55.80