With the Southern Hemisphere leg of the 2010/11 Swatch TTR World Tour done and dusted, we have the first tour leaders of this season to announce: Norwegian ripper Gjermund Braaten and Swiss rider Sina Candrian.
The New Zealand Open are traditionally the event to set the pace for the upcoming season, and this year was no exception. Especially with the new judging system, the Snowboard Live Scoring (SLS) system, being tested by both riders and judges and fully approved by all parties. But of course there was also some great riding shown at the NZO, despite challenging riding conditions. The slopestyle day was a foggy one, but Christian Haller (SUI) was able to power through and bag his first major TTR title, and 19-year old Jamie Anderson (USA), who has been building herself a reputation as a slopestyle superstar, took home the top spot for the women. The conditions turned around to sun and slush for the halfpipe competition where Iouri Podladtchikov (SUI) and Kelly Clark (USA) took home top honors.
The rookie scene was also pumping down under with a handful of 3Star events happening in both New Zealand and Australia. The 3Star Dew Hut Jam took place at the end of July, featuring a very unique team format that the riders loved. Kiwi riders Stef Zeestraten and Jake Koia won the session as a team representing New Zealand. The 3Star Billabong Bro Down at Snow Park NZ featured a big air format and a stacked rider list. Once again, local up-and-comer, Jake Koia (NZL), took the top spot with a huge frontside 1080 melon entering the TTR Top 20 and now sits in 18th position on the World Rankings. Due to a record breaking snowstorm the legendary 4Star Stylewars in Australia had to be canceled though.
With two major events in the bag for the men and one major for the women for the 2010/11 season, the TTR tour will take a hiatus for a couple of months before returning to the Northern Hemisphere. Oakley Air & Style in Beijing will kick things off with a bang as the first major event for the men. After China, the tour will move on to Europe for the classic run of the O’Neill Evolution, Burton European Open and Billabong Air & Style Innsbruck. For a complete calendar of events and all the latest information on the 2010/11 TTR World Snowboard tour, head over to ttrworldtour.com.