March 30, 2013 – Riders from all over the World flocked to Andorra this weekend for the ninth Edition of the Grandvalira Total Fight. This year the Total Fight upgraded to 5 stars on the World Snowboard Tour making it one of the season's most globally anticipated slopestyle events. This year's slopestyle started off with a rail zone which consisted of a choice between a 6 metre rail or a rail king, followed by a down box with a 5 metre gap or a wallride, followed by the line of three kickers. All the riders had to show their best skills on the varying spring conditions to win the final prize.
American Domination in the Qualifiers
During the qualifying sessions, the Americans Seth Hill and Eric Willett came out on top. The qualifiers were divided into two groups of 29 riders who each had two rounds, with the best round counting. Each group was distilled to 12 creating a total of 24 riders for the Grandvalira Total Fight 2013 finals.
A Canadian Victory
The weather was temperamental for today's finals; a mixture of snow, rain, wind, and sun accompanied the riders throughout the day. The 24 finalists were pitched against each other in pairs, with only two rounds to prove their skills and knock out their rivals. The pairing, which depended on the previous day's scores, went as such: Janne Korpi against Seth Hill, Tor Lundstrom against Brage Richenberg, Jon Versteeg against Eric Willett, Jeremy Thompson against Charles Reid, Marco Grigis against Aleksi Partanen, Simon Gruber against Ville Uotila, Tyler Nicholson against Spencer Link, Ian Thorley against Eric Beauchemin, Peter Horak against Mans Hedberg, Robby Balharry against Nuuti Niemela, Kevin Backstrom against Simen Neraker and Kevin Kok against Markku Koski. The 12 riders who made it to the final were: Seth Hill, Brage Richenberg, Eric Willett, Charles Reid, Aleksi Partanen, Ville Uotila, Tyler Nicholson, Eric Beauchemin, Mans Hedberg, Nuuti Niemela, Kevin Backstrom and Kevin Kok.
Thanks to mother nature's shaky mood today, the weather got wilder and wilder making the visibilty close to zero, meaning that, despite the shapers hard work, the slopestyle was getting slower and the finalists couldn't make it to the jumps. Just as it looked like the weather was getting her way and ending the Total Fight prematurely, the sun came out and the competition continued. Unfortunately, the tardiness meant that the judging system had to be changed and the 12 finalists only had two rounds to win the competition.
This year's hands down Grandvalira Total Fight 2013 winner was the Canadian Charles Reid, who won with a spectacular round which started off with a Gap Front 270 Front Board followed by a Gap Front Boad to Fakie, Cab Double Cork Mute 900 and sweetly polished off with a Back Rodeo 5 Melon.
The American Willett came close to the Canadian with a round that started off with a Front 270 Front Board followed by a Front Board, Front Mute and finished by a Back Rodeo 5 Melon
Swedish star Kevin Backstrom came third with an epic round: a Gap Front Lip followed by a Backside 50-50 Front 180 Off, Cab 900 Melon and finished by a Back 720 Mute.
22-year-old Charles Reid, a resident of Mont-Tremblant (Quebec, Canada) said:
"It feels pretty good to get up on the podium and win first prize, even more so when it's a TTR event like this. I didn't expect to win the competition but I had a lot of confidence in my tricks. The circuit was incredible, you could get a lot of speed, it was really good. I'll be back next year for sure!"
The first fifteen winners shared 40,000 € of cash between them. The first three won 15,000 €, 10,000 € and 5,000 € respectively.
The World Snowboard Tour, which is part of the TTR Pro Snowboarding organization, is currently the most internationally recognized circuit, with events in Europe, South and North America, Asia and Oceania. The TTR Pro Snowboarding philosophy was founded on the principle that snowboarding needed it's very own high standard of quality, authenticity and innovation, fundamental values that the Total Fight organisation shares full heartedly.
The Andorran Government, San Miguel, Burton and Buff sponsor the Grandvalira Total Fight.
The Party Pushes Through The Night With The ElectroSnow Music Festival
Coinciding with this year's Total Fight is the first edition of the ElectroSnow music festival. DJ's from all over the world, including Carl Craig, Nina Kraviz, Fairmont (Live), Nôze (Live), Paul Loraine, Undo, Bambounou, Miss Kittin & The Hacker, Michael Mayer, Pablo Bolívar, Wankelmut, Sound Pellegrino Thermal Team, Voice of Blacks (Live), Le K y Horla & Bruma, Nerone, Vincent Abbo, Departure Brothers have come to the tiny Pyrenean country for two nights of electronic music.
2013 GRANDVALIRA TOTAL FIGHT:
NAME COUNTRY SPONSOR HIGHEST SCORE
1 – Charles Reid CAN Oakley 84.67
2 – Eric Willett USA Vans 82.33
3 – Kevin Backstrom SWE Nike 73.33
4 – Eric Beauchemin USA DC 69.00
5 – Tyler Nicholson CAN Lib Tech 65.00
6 – Nuuti Niemela FIN Smith 58.67
7 – Aleksi Partanen FIN Koli 55.00
8 – Ville Uotila FIN Dye 52.33
9 – Kevin Kok ITA Burn 46.00
10 – Seth Hill USA Sims 39.67
11 – Brage Richenberg NOR Sabotage 31.67
12 – Mans Hedberg SWE DC 28.33