All Photos by Ashley Barker
Calgary, Alberta (Feb. 7, 2009)-
A field of 40 men and 16 women competed today for the Burton Canadian Open halfpipe titles worth CAD$7,500 each and Canada came out on top, taking five of the six podium spots. Part of the Burton Global Open Series and the Swatch Ticket To Ride World Snowboard Tour, the first annual Canadian Open showcased some of the world's top snowboarders competing at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, a facility of WinSport Canada.
In the women's competition Mercedes Nicoll, member of the Canadian National Snowboard Team, took the lead early in semi-finals, scoring an 87.5 with a run that started out with a backside 540 melon, followed by a frontside 540 stalefish, followed by a stylish backside nosegrab, into a frontside tailgrab, backside melon, finishing with a melon to fakie. Hot on her heels was Burton European Open slopestyle gold medalist, Lisa Wiik out of Norway, in addition to six other ladies who were ready to go big and throw down.
And that's exactly what 16-year-old Palmer Taylor did in women's halfpipe finals. Her winning run started off with a frontside 720, followed by a Cab 360 indy, followed by a frontside air, into a backside air and finishing with a frontside 900, the first 900 done in the women's competition all week. "I just went for it (the 900) in my third run, I felt like I had nothing to lose", said Palmer. "It's awesome to win in your own country; it was more meaningful to me, in a way. My parents were watching the live webcast on Go211, they called me right after and were freaking out. I was so speechless when all the other girls came up to hug me."
The Canadian contingent was super strong throughout the men's semi-finals, taking 12 out of 16 spots in the finals, including COP park groomer Josh Duncan. 32-year-old Justin Lamoureux was spinning to win, finishing first in semis by dropping in switch and starting things off with a frontside 900, followed by a switch backside 900, into a backside 540, followed by a frontside 900, finishing with a backside 900.
Lamoureux stomped two high-scoring runs in finals with big, technical sequences. But it was COP local and high school senior Jed Anderson who walked away with first place by impressing the judges with his effortless style and clean landings. Anderson's last and best run started off with a frontside 720, followed by a switch frontside 720, into a frontside 360 crail, followed by a switch frontside 900, finishing with a switch backside 720. "I've been riding here [at COP] my whole life", said Jed. "I don't even usually ride halfpipe, I wasn't a very likely candidate in the field, it was super surprising that I won."
The Burton Global Open Series is also part of the Swatch Ticket To Ride World Snowboard Tour (TTR), the largest group of independent freestyle snowboard events in the world. In the Swatch TTR World Tour rankings Burton rider Charles Reid (CAN) moved up one notch to World No. 9 getting closer to breaking into the TTR Top 5. On the women’s side, it was Lisa Wiik (NOR) climbing four spots into World No. 6 with her third place finish. With a stacked field of riders ready to hit the slopestyle course tomorrow, there are sure to be some more shake-ups in both the women’s and men’s TTR Top 10. TTR ranks riders based on their results at participating competitions and crowns a TTR World Champion at the US Open. For more information on the Swatch TTR World Tour, visit www.ttrworldtour.com
Burton Canadian Open Halfpipe Results
1 Palmer Taylor CAN Burton 82.83
2 Sarah Conrad CAN Ride 80.33
3 Lisa Wiik NOR Roxy 73.33
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