Westbound Boarder For Flippin’ Chicks!
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    September 21st, 2011DanielleBoardalicious

    Two years in the making, it is finally here! For me anyways as I get to check out the Art of Flight tomorrow night in Salt Lake City.

    For those of you who don’t know, Art of Flight is a snowboard film, two years in the making with one hell of a line up; Travis Rice, John Jackson, Mark Landvik, Scotty Lago, Jake Blauvelt, Nicolas Muller, Gigi Ruf, DCP and Pat Moore. Apparently, the boundaries are pushed, redefining what is possible in the mountains. The Art of Flight takes us to the unexplored mountains in the remote corners of the world.

    What better way to get stoked on the snowboard season? Hope to see you at the Art of Flight tomorrow. If not, check out the website for the tour line up or download the trailer here.

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    December 17th, 2010AndreaCompetitions, Events, News, Snowboarding

    I’m out here in Breckenridge helping out with the first winter Dew Tour stop of the season – its been one heck of a tour so far!  More than 380 riders from 18 different countries are competing in this year’s tour, including Kelly Clark, Elena Hight, JJ Thomas, Scotty Lago, Sage Kostenburg, Mason Aguirre, Jamie Anderson, Chanelle Sladics, and Louie Vito.  This year, the tour opted to follow the new industry standard and debut a 22 foot halfpipe instead of the 18 foot pipe it has used in the past, so we should see some pretty sick tricks over the next couple of days.

    Today, Kevin Pearce made a quick appearance in the village (apparently it is one of his first public appearances since his big injury), and he should be all set for an interview with Fuel TV tomorrow afternoon.

    Yesterday and today, the tour held qualifying rounds, and the men’s superpipe finals are on deck for tomorrow.  Keep checking back for the latest updates!

    To give you a little sneak peak of the slopestyle course, check out the video from Alli below.

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    March 2nd, 2010AndreaOlympics

    Gotta love Jimmy Kimmel… Gotta love Kimmel even more when Scotty Lago is on!  This past Friday, US Olympic half pipe bronze medalist Scotty Lago appeared on the Jimmy Kimmel show to talk about what it was like to win an Olympic bronze medal … and how it felt to be sent home a couple days later.

    In case you didn’t catch it, Olympic snowboarder Scotty Lago was asked to leave the Olympic games (or face a disciplinary hearing) 2 weeks early after some “mildly suggestive” photos appeared on TMZ, depicting Lago “using his bronze medal for snowboarding to score chicks.”

    Personally, I think the Olympic committee overreacted in their decision to ask Scotty to leave the games.  When I first heard about the incident (without seeing the photos, firsthand), I expected him to be stark naked or something!  Really, the photos weren’t that bad, and the only reason the Olympic committee got upset is likely because Scotty was wearing a T-shirt with the Olympic logo plainly visible in one of the photos.  I understand the perspective that the medal is sacred (or whatever) and should not be treated in an incriminaing light, however, I’m sure every athlete parties a little bit and wants to show off their new, shiny piece of medal.  Especially around attractive females! :)  After all, Olympic athletes are human, too.  Scotty just happened to use his medal to lure in the female fish … while also reeling in the paparazzi.

    This incident brings up two good points.  First, this is the first Olympic games where new media played a huge role.  New media tends to accelerate the news cycle, and I don’t think athletes this year were adequately prepared to address.  Second, Scotty became a celebrity basically overnight.  In chatting about the incident with some of my coworkers a couple of days after, one of them said quite brashly, “what do you expect from a snowboarder?”  Ok, no.  What do you expect from any normal teenager?!  Case in point, and if anything, the Olympic committee should have taken stronger measures (and a long, boring seminar isn’t quite what I consider a measure) to enforce appropriate conduct at parties that athletes consider safe from the limelight.

    All said and done now, Lago’s voluntary exit doesn’t change the fact that last week he became an American hero.  But it was his home town that supported him the most.  The Olympic games and the athletes that bring them to life are important, because they give small town kids big dreams, dreams they will work hard to achieve.  And the day Scotty won the bronze, thousands of kids around the world thought, “Wow.  That will be me someday.”

    Despite being sent home from the Olympics prior to the closing ceremonies, Jimmy Kimmel came through and threw Scotty a closing ceremony of his very own!  The incident is something that will be left in the dust, and at least Scotty has a good attitude about it.  In the words of Lago, “It is what it is.”

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    February 19th, 2010AndreaOlympics, Snowboarding

    The Olympic halfpipe events, which most participants have spent months, even years, preparing for, have come and gone, and it really was quite a good time.  Shaun White totally stole the show (and for good reason) but with all the hype around White the past few weeks, I think many of the talents of other competitors got lost in the mix.  Lago, Vito, Bleiler, Clark, even some of the international riders, all put on a great show, and were acclaimed in their own, individual ways.

    So now, I want to open it up to you all and invite you to share your thoughts post-comps.  Did you watch the Olympic snowboard games?  Who was your favorite competitor?  What were your favorite moments?

    Let’s hear it in the comments below!

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    January 24th, 2010AndreaNews, Olympics, Snowboarding

    With all five Grand Prix events officially behind us, today, the 2010 US Winter Snowboard Team was finally announced, with one spot on both the women and men up for grabs.  Without further ado, here are the six shredders who will be representing the US in Vancouver next month (the last two will be announced in a press conference Monday afternoon):

    Shaun White
    Louie Vito
    Scotty Lago

    Kelly Clark
    Gretchen Bleiler
    Hannah Teter

    Congrats to all, and good luck!  And in case you missed yesterday’s Grand Prix in Park City, you can catch the highlights and full event coverage today at 3pmET on NBC.

    UPDATE: Elena Hight and Greg Bretz were added to the half pipe team, rounding it out to a full team of eight riders.  Yeah!

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    Well, Shaun White and Kelly Clark stuck it again in today’s US Snowboarding Grand Prix in Park City.  Shaun saw a near perfect score of 49.5 (out of 50), with Scotty Lago trailing just behind with a 48, and Luke Mitrini coming in third.  Today marks Shaun’s fourth first place finish (out of 5) in all Grand Prix Olympic qualifying events.  But then again, Park City was just practice for Shaun, as he was already confirmed as an Olympic team member after last round.  Scotty has now had two second place finishes and one third, so he will likely be invited to join the US Olympic team a well, alongside Shaun.  Danny Davis, the one competitor to beat out Shaun (in Mammoth), and formerly a likely Olympic teammate as well, unfortunately broke his back during an ATV accident last Sunday.  He underwent surgery Monday and is now being cared for in a local hospital, alongside Kevin Pearce.  Danny is an awesome rider – one of my personal faves – so it is unfortunate to hear he won’t be joining the team in Vancouver this year.

    On the women’s side, Kelly came in first (again), followed by Hannah Teter and Kaitlyn Farrington.  Kelly, in comparison to the other riders, is absolutely going bigger, which is putting her in prime position to land some of the tougher spins and tricks that you need more time in the air to solidify.  She has been doing awesome through the thick of it all, so I’m excited to see what she’ll pull in Vancouver next month.  I also really like Hannah’s riding because she always throws down a smooth, solid run that’s fun to watch, and, minus a few small flubs, I think she really stuck it in Park City.

    For the women, it is pretty obvious who will be going to Vancouver, and who will be watching from the sidelines.  For the men, however, there is some stiff competition, so it will be interesting to see how the last two spots play out.

    Results, Day 1 (Friday)

    1. Shaun White, Carlsbad, CA, 49.00
    2. Scotty Lago, Seabrook, NH, 47.70
    3. Greg Bretz, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 46.70
    4. Elijah Teter, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 44.00
    5. Luke Mitrani, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 44.00
    6. Louie Vito, Sandy, UT, 43.30
    7. JJ Thomas, Golden, CO, 43.00
    8. Danny Kass, Portand, OR, 42.70
    9. Steve Fisher, Breckenridge, CO, 42.00
    10. Dylan Bidez, Minturn, CO, 41.30

    1. Kelly Clark, Mt. Snow, VT, 45.20
    2. Hannah Teter, Belmont, VT, 44.80
    3. Ellery Hollingsworth, Stratton, VT, 43.60
    4. Gretchen Bleiler, Aspen, CO, 42.50
    5. Elena Hight, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 40.00
    6. Kaitlyn Farrington, Sun Valley, ID, 39.20
    7. Maddy Schaffrick, Steamboat Springs, CO, 31.40
    8. Kelly Marren, Hillsborough, CA, 29.40
    9. Clair Bidez, Minturn, CO, 19.30

    Results, Day 2 (Saturday)

    1. Shaun White 49.5
    2. Scotty Lago 48
    3. Luke Mitrani 45.3
    4. Gregory Bretz 44.8
    5. JJ Thomas 44.2
    6. Jack Mitrani 42.3
    7. Dylan Bidez 42.1
    8. Steve Fisher 40.6
    9. Zach Black 38.5
    10. Broc Waring 38.2
    11. Danny Kass 37.5
    12. Andy Finch 36.7

    1. Kelly Clark 47.40
    2. Hannah Teter 43.90
    3. Kaitlyn Farrington 41.00
    4. Madeline Schaffrick 36.50
    5. Elena Hight 36.20

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    January 21st, 2010AndreaCompetitions, Events, News, Olympics, Snowboarding

    I know we have all been anxiously waiting to hear who will be riding on this year’s 2010 Olympic Halfpipe team.  This weekend, Park City, Utah will play host to the fifth and final round of the Olympic qualifiers, where 30 riders will be vying for the remaining spots on this year’s team.

    The US Snowboarding Grand Prix made stops earlier this year at Copper Mountain and Mammoth Mountain, so Park City will be the third and final stop of the tour where the 2010 Olympic team (four men and four women) will officially be announced.

    We know that Shaun White, who has already seen two first place finishes in former qualifying rounds, has already solidified his spot on this year’s US Olympic team in the men’s category.  Louie Vito, with two second place wins, is in good shape as well. Other probable contenders include JJ Thomas, Zach Black, Scotty Lago, and Mason Aguirre, though the last two spots remain somewhat uncertain.

    On the women’s side, Kelly Clark’s two earlier wins in qualifying rounds have already secured her a spot on the team, with Gretchen Blieler being a shoe in as well.  Elena Hight and Hannah Teter also have the odds in their favor, though Ellery Hollingsworth will give them a good run for their money.  Between these five ladies, the four open spots up for grabs this weekend in Park City seem fairly predictable.  The only question now is, which one won’t get to see Vancouver this winter?

    Catch the US Snowboarding Grand Prix on January 23, 8:30pm ET/5:30pm PT on Fuel TV or via the live stream here: http://www.fuel.tv/USSnowboarding

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