The Belgian boss Seppe Smits did an outstanding performance on Saturday, with a clean win in front of a very prestigious line up of riders. Roope Tonteri and Eric Willet finish respectively second and third of the Andorran contest. Here's a video from the quali rounds, full gallery and final video recap coming soon.
Great result often comes from uncertainty: firstly this win from Seppe in front of a very prestigious line up is definately an achievement for him; secondly the contest was on hold until the Saturday morning, after a very windy Friday and a rainy night. In the end, the 11th edition of the Grandvalira Total Fight allowed the spectators to witness one of the most recognized events in the calendar of The World Snowboard Tour. The riders who participated in the Andorran rendezvous did not disappoint the audience with a very high level of tricks.
After the practice session on Friday, the 40 riders would have everything in play on Saturday in an elaborate Slopestyle circuit composed of five different features; a rail combo, followed by canon box, an 18 meter Table top, a 16 meter kicker and a final transfer step up to step down / donkey rail.
On Saturday, Grandvalira would rise cloudy and miserable but within a couple of hours the sun took its place. The shapers of snowpark El Tarter pampered the circuit throughout the competition to ensure maximum performance until the end of the contest.
In the qualifying session, all riders had two chances to get the highest score possible to try and qualify for the eight finalists. Seppe Smits, World Champion in 2011, was first to qualify for the final session followed by the American Eric Willet, the Brit Rowan Coultas, the American Brett Moody , the Norwegian Markus Olmstad, the Finnish Kalle Jaervilehto, another Finnish Roope Tonteri and finally the Austrian Mathias Weissenbacher.
It was time for the final, where the selected group of eight riders would have two opportunities to win the eleventh edition of the Grandvalira Total Fight. The Participants would jump into the ring in reverse order of qualifying and the tension increased at the start gate.
In the first of the two rounds all riders would give their all and Seppe Smits set the standard after nailing on his first try a Frontside 270 in 270 out on the first rail, Switch boardslide 270 out on the canon box, Cab double 1260 Indy on the first jump, Backside double cork 1080 nosegrab on the second kicker and final Ollie to laid out backflip on the final feature. An impressive winning round.
Seppe Smits, after being crowned champion of the Grandvalira Total Fight, said “I’m feeling pretty great. It was a challenge as I didn’t start off well, I increased my confidence during the contest. The shapers did an awesome job and I managed to land the tricks I had in mind. All of this surrounded by great friends, it’s the best feeling one can have."
The eleventh edition of the Grandvalira Total Fight in snowboard had its climax with the prize giving and final party at the Abarset; the competition was applauded by many as the best edition of all time.
FINAL RESULTS (Top 16)
1st - Seppe Smits (Bel)
2nd - Roope Tonteri (Fin)
3rd - Eric Willet (USA)
4th - Rowan Coultas (UK)
5th - Kalle Jaervilehto (Fin)
6th - Brett Moody (USA)
7th - Markus Olmstad (Nor)
8th - Mathias Weissenbacher (Aut)
9th - Mack Kyle (USA)
10th - Spencer Whiting (USA)
11th - Moritz Thoenen (Sui)
12th - Jonas Boesiger (Sui)
13th - Jordan Phillips (Can)
14th - Dario Burch (Sui)
15th - Sacha Moretti (Fra)
16th - Kim Rune Hansen (Nor)