Saturday, 1 January 2005
Release courtesy of www.sb-jam.com
The buildup to the 6th edition of the O'Neill SB-Jam continued to gain momentum today with the best style and best trick sessions taking place this afternoon.The 30 riders left in contention for the 2004 O'Neill SB-Jam title were invited to throw down for cash prizes, and in true SB-Jam style the riders were both judge and jury for the sessions; casting vote on each other to decide who was riding with the most style in the pipe and who pulled off the best trick on the kicker.
At the culmination of the hour-long style and trick fest the riders almost unanimously decided that Nicolas MÜLLER (CH)was the ultimate style master in the pipe while O'Neill Team rider Eirik HAUGO (NOR) was pulling off the best tricks on the big kicker.Davos was blessed with blue bird skies throughout the day and this perfect visibility enabled the riders to become better acquainted with the new and unique Jakobshorn setup ahead of tomorrow final showdown. As the riders got to grips with the 70-meter superpipe and its 6-meter elevations, the performance levels slipped up a notch and the action began to go ballistic with super smooth hits flowing throughout. At the culmination of the 30-minute session Nicolas Müller, already holding a TTR Medallion from his sterling performance at the Air & Style leg of the tour earlier in the month, was voted the SB-Jam's style master for his silky smooth transitions in the pipe.
Last years SB-Jam ‘Ruler of the Night' Markku Koski (FIN) was also back and styling. Throwing down smooth runs reminiscent of the show he put on to win last years event, Koski slid his way into the second place position with his easygoing, fluid riding that made his big straight airs and ally oops look totally effortless. Risto Mattila (FIN) took third in the category.
It's good to get second in the style category today." Began Koski. "It's a good warm up for tomorrow's main event so I'm pretty happy with that…there's a big Finnish posse here at the event and it always relaxes me to ride with them as they're the guys I ride with back home. We really push each other to go harder. When I see my friend throwing down a 7 or something like that I always want to beat it. The SB-Jam is great for that. Everyone's pushing each other all the time so the standard always raises to the highest levels and with the extra Ticket To Ride on offer everyone's going harder than ever before. It would be nice to win the event again but there are so many good riders here it's going to be tough." He added.
In the ‘Best Trick' session the focus turned from the superpipe to the adjacent kicker set up. Competition was again fierce with the riders pushing the performance levels higher and higher with every run. In the end the riders voted Team O'Neill's Eirik Haugo as the trickster of the session for a string of aerial wizardry that included a b/s rodeo tweaker, b/s 180 Japan before sealing his victory with a massive switch B/s 9 indie."I really liked that kicker." Began Eirik. "It got a little tracked up at the end there but it felt super good to ride it. The thing is with events like this is there are so many good riders that you can never be sure that you've won so you have to keep pushing it for the whole session… Rider judging is the best system I think. It's the riders that know snowboarding the best so it the best way in my opinion…the SB-Jam is my favorite event of the year. It's so good to be here again and winning the best trick category makes it all the sweeter." He added.
New addition to the O'Neill team, Anssi Manninen (FIN), took the second spot in the best trick category while Nicolas Muller (CH) added a third position to the first place spot he earned in the style category.
Today's ‘Best Trick' and ‘Best Style' session served as a taster of things to come and was proof that the 30 snowboarding superstars lined up for tomorrows final bout are hungry for victory. Tomorrow the pre event build up continues with the ‘Highest Air' session in the superpipe set to roll before the main event, the finals of the O'Neill SB-Jam, kicks off and rocks the European snowboarding fraternity into 2005. Up for grabs tomorrow is the title of SB-Jam ‘Rocker of the Night' as well as 2 coveted TTR medallions.
O'Neill SB-Jam Finalists Donate 30% of the Prize Purse To Asian Tsunami Relief Effort
Ticket To Ride's (TTR) CEO Drew Stevenson today announced that the O'Neill SB-Jam finalists have pledged to donate 30% of the events prize purse to the relief efforts in the wake of the Asian Tsunami. More information to follow.
THE O'NEILL SB-JAM TO HIT EUROSPORT O'Neill Europe are pleased to announce that the highlights from the O'Neill SB-Jam snowboard sessions in Davos, Switzerland, (28th Dec 2004 – 1st Jan 2005) will be broadcast on the Eurosport Network on New Years Day between 21.00 – 22.00 CET. If you can't make it to Davos this New Years Eve, O'Neill and Eurosport will ensure you don't miss out!