O誰eill Evolution 2009: High standard in quarterpipe qualification

With a high air of 7.8 meters and the likes of a 6.8 meter bs720, the qualification round of the O誰eill Evolution 2009 Quarterpipe in Davos set an impressive standard for the finals.

Quarterpipe qualification. Coypright: Martin NinkThe two standout runs came from 18 year old French rider, Oli Gittler in the first round, and 14 year old Dimi de Jong in the second round.

Oli set the standard with a 4.8m McTwist, a stylish 5.4m roast beef grab and a 5.1m rocket air. With the judges looking for a variety of tricks and style – he cruised through.

“It was an amazing day today with the sun out, the quarterpipe wasn’t too icy. It felt really good,” Oli said. Despite the added height and vert, Oli was giving it his all: “It’s all about guts, the quarterpipe. I just put on my hard music and get pumped up before going down the in-run.”
 
Oli Gittler will be one to watch in the finals with his plethora of tricks and his style and consistency: “I may have a few more tricks left for the finals, but I am not going to tell anyone,” he said. However Manuel Pietropoli is the name he is tipping: “he just goes so high.”

After qualifying for the slopestyle, 14 year old Dutch O’Neill rider went one better on the quarterpipe – qualifying top for the finals with a 5.5m double grab bs air, a bs720 of 6.8m and a nearly successful bs900.

“It’s cool to finish top, but really it’s the same thing as finishing 7th or something – it is just about qualifying for the finals,” Dimi said. 
“It felt good out there today. I was landing deep during training but today it all went good,” he said. “I can do a bs9 in the halfpipe but this was the first time I tried it in the quarterpipe.

The highest air of the day went to another young Dutch O’Neill rider, Steve Krijbolder. The 17 year old flew with a massive 7.8m bs air. It follows his impressive performance in the finals last year.

“I already went higher than I did last year,” Steve said. “The quarterpipe feels super good this year. I just have to try some new tricks as well.” 

It’s down to business from tomorrow night when some of the biggest names in snowboarding will battle it out in the knock-out heats at the Slopestyle finals.

Slopestyle finals start tomorrow (January 9). The round of 32 will start at 3.45pm, the round of 16 starts at 6.20pm and the quarterfinals kick off the final rounds at 7.45pm.

“Go big,” head judge, Dani Kiwi Meier advised. “We are also looking for variety. You need to do a different trick on the second kicker to make it count as a different run,” he said. “It will force the riders to mix it up with a little variation.” And it will no doubt guarantee and action-packed scintillating final for The O’Neill Evolution 2009.

Peetu Piiroinen.  Copyright: Stadler
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