Ursina Haller Wins O’Neill Evolution Women’s Pipe

WHERE:   Davos, Switzerland

WHEN:   January 4 – 9, 2010

WHAT:   Running with gravity

WHO:    MEN – Halfpipe 6-star, Slopestyle 5-star

WOMEN – Halfpipe 6-star

Swiss snowboarder Ursina Haller took victory in a closely fought women's halfpipe final at the O'Neill Evolution in Davos.

"I didn't expect to win," said Ursina. "I was hoping for top five or top three – so I am even more stoked with the win!"

The sun came out for this first day of competition at the O'Neill Evolution 2010 to highlight the impressive halfpipe riding from the women. "The pipe was really good and the weather worked for us too today. We had a good time," said Ursina.

Her winning run of 84.5 from her first run of the final, consisted of a FS 5 into a BS 5, a Stalefish, a BS air, and a FS 7 at the bottom.

"The whole vibe of the competition was not to put too much pressure on the riders," she said. "We had so much fun in the qualifications, which was a jam session, so it felt like you were riding with your friends. Then in the finals we had three runs too, so we just continued to have fun!"

18-year-old Slovakian snowboarder Cilka Sadar – the youngest rider in the final – was surprised but delighted with her second place finish – after coming from fifth on her final run.

"I wasn't nervous because I got fifth in the qualifiers and then before the final run I was also fifth. So I didn't really expect to do that good," said Cilka. "I am clearly better when I am not that nervous!"

Finishing off the top three was another Swiss rider, Manuela Peska, who finished in first place in the qualification round, and with her consistent runs ended the competition in third place.

Although finishing 6th, Sarka Pancochova was the one partying the hardest at the award ceremony – with each of the top eight finalists receiving a bottle of champagne – as she maintains her Swatch TTR World Tour lead.

Dutch rider, Cheryl Maas moved up to second place, and now the world number three is Cilka Sadar.

With women competing at the O'Neill Evolution for the first time in three years, it proved a decisive and important stop on the Swatch TTR World Tour.

"When I saw that women were back at Eovlution on the TRR page I was really stoked," said the winner Ursina. "It's not far from my home, and I always thought it was a great event – with the halfpipe and having it in the village. Hopefully they have it again here next year – that would be great!"

Tomorrow the halfpipe opens to the men – when the qualification round begins at 11am.

FINALS RESULTS

1. ($8,000)     Ursina Haller (SUI)

2. ($6,000)     Cilka Sadar (SLO)

3. ($4,000)     Manuela Pesko (SUI)

4. ($4,000)     Kjersti Ostgaard Buaas (NOR)

5. ($2,000)     Caroline Beliard (FRA)

6. ($1,000)     Sarka Pancochova (CZE)

7. ($500)     Nadja Purtschert (SUI)

8. ($500)     Akiko Miwa (JPN)

SCHEDULE

Monday January 4 – Training

Tuesday January 5 – Women's Halfpipe

Wednesday January 6 – Men's Halfpipe Qualifications

Thursday January 7 – Men's Slopestyle Qualifications

Friday January 8 – MEN'S HALFPIPE FINALS

Saturday January 9 – MEN'S SLOPESTYLE FINALS

FACTS & FIGURES

Dates: 04 – 09 January 2010

Location: Bolgen, Jakobshorn, Davos, Switzerland

Rating: 6-star Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour

Prizemoney: US$ 100.000

Formats: Men Halfpipe & Slopestyle, Women Halfpipe

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Visit www.oneill.com/evolution for the daily highlight shows and all the latest news.

All videos, photos and press releases can be downloaded at www.press.oneill.com.

Event videos are available for editorial usage. Embed codes will be distributed in separate mails and as soon as they are available.

All information about Davos and the area can be found on www.davosklosters.ch.

PRESS CONTACTS

O'Neill Europe                                                                        PR Switzerland

Lara Ellsworth-Jones                                                      FAF AG

e: press@oneilleurope.com                                                      Maurus Strobel

p: +31 71 56 00 800                                                                        e: maurus.strobel@fafag.ch

O'Neill Switzerland                                                                  International TV

Claudio Curiger                                                                        Quattro Media, Susanne Lenz

e: claudio.curiger@sportbrands.ch                                    e: susanne.lenz@4msports.com

p: +41 55 418 40 56                                                                        p: +49 8093 572 20

ABOUT O'NEILL

O’Neill, the original California surf, snow and lifestyle brand, was founded in 1952 when a young man named Jack O’Neill took his unstoppable passion for surfing and used it to beat Mother Nature at her own game. Pioneering the world’s first neoprene surf wetsuit, Jack had successfully found a way to extend his surf sessions in the bone-chilling breaks of Northern California. He opened up the garage doors to his first surf shop soon after.

While many things have changed since those humble beginnings, Jack’s initial vision of producing functional and innovative board riding products continues to lie at the core of everything the company does. O’Neill’s set of core values – innovation in style and technology – has seen the brand devote itself wholeheartedly to the evolution of action sports. From the first neoprene surf wetsuit and board leash, to the world’s first stitchless board shorts and range of groundbreaking wearable electronics, O’Neill’s spirit of innovation will always drive the company forwards.

Today, O’Neill can be found the world over. In touch with its rich heritage and the universal appeal of board riding culture, O’Neill will always be committed to growing its reputation as one of the world’s leading youth lifestyle brands based on a unique half-century of history as the First Name in the Water.

ABOUT SWATCH
Swatch, founded in 1983 by Nicolas G. Hayek and under the presidency today of Arlette-Elsa Emch, is a leading Swiss watch and jewelry maker and one of the world’s most fashionable brands. Swatch is a member of the international Swatch Group of Biel/Bienne, Switzerland. The brand has been closely associated for many years with trendy lifestyle and popular sports, through its role as Official Timekeeper at competitive events, the introduction and development of Swatch Pro Teams, and through innovative products like the Swatch Snowpass System, a built-in access technology allowing Swatch watches to serve as ski passes at over 600 winter sports destinations around the world.