SNOWBIRD, UT, USA—On Sunday February 17th, the world’s best big air skiers and snowboarders will converge in Utah’s Little Cottonwood Canyon at Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort to compete for $40,000 in prize money. Athletes from eight countries will travel to Utah to compete in the most prestigious big air event in North America. The Red Bull Huckfest in comprised of festivities and competition, where athletes will compete in a head to head format on a multi-hit course. Dating back to 1999, then called Red Bull Freeride, this event was the first high-level big air competition that brought together both skiers and snowboarders to showcase their skills and compete for the best prize money in the sport. In the year 2000, the event was renamed the Red Bull Huckfest and it has maintained the status as the most impressive and competitive invitational event of the season. Red Bull has always created events that highlight new and progressive sports through their numerous events around the world. "It is our goal to bring these spectacular athletes to the forefront of public and industry awareness by supporting them through creating dynamic events like the Red Bull Huckfest, " said Carolyn Deighan, Red Bull Event Coordinator. Defending ski champion, Tanner Hall, was the most victorious big air athlete of 2001. In addition to the Huckfest, Hall won the ESPN X Games Big Air, and the Freeze US Freeskiing Open. 2001 Huckfest Snowboard champion, Jason Borgstede, is also accomplished competitor in big air, who placed 2nd at the 2000 ESPN X Games Big Air. Both athletes will attend to defend their titles. Numerous other big air icons will challenge Hall and Borgstede; including the innovative freeskier Candide Thovex of France, Swiss skier Mickael Deschenaux, 2001 2nd place finisher Philippe Belanger of Canada, and Swedish skiing favorite Jon Olsson. Superstar snowboarders Marc Frank Montoya and Brent Meyer will be among the snowboarding competitors to challenge Borgstede for the 2002 title. Numerous ski and snowboard celebrities plan to attend the event, including freeskiing icon Shane McConkey, and Olympic Gold Medallist and 2002 Olympic Moguls competitor, Jonny Moseley. Festivities will get under way on Saturday the 16th of January with practice at 12:00pm and a jam session will happen at 1:00pm. The jam session will determine the top 16 athletes in each discipline. A panel of snowboard and skiing judges will evaluate the athletes on a scale of 1-100 on categories that include: Run Difficulty, Control and Landing, Technique, Amplitude and Overall Impression. Upon conclusion of the jam session, just 16 athletes in each discipline will be invited to compete in the Huckfest finals on Sunday. In the finals, pairs of skiers and snowboarders will face off in head to head competition; the last man standing in each sport is the respective winner. Athletes will hit the course for warm-up at 10:30am the main event will begin at Noon. An on-snow awards show will immediately follow the event. A Red Bull Afterburner party will be held at an undisclosed location on Sunday night featuring the popular punk rock band Pennywise. The Huckfest course is composed of a short series of different hits. Athletes begin by immediately hitting a left hip jump, which then leads them into a wall slide. In a continuing effort to push the limits of innovation, course designer, Keith Pfahler, will incorporate this new element, which is a combination between a quarter pipe and a rail slide. After the wall slide, athletes continue down to a final big air jump. The Red Bull Huckfest was conceived and organized by Mountain Sports International Event Management Company. Event sponsors include Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort, Atomic Skis, Oakley Eyewear, and Freeze Magazine. source:freezeonline.com


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