Grand Prix Copper: Men’s superpipe qualifiers

11 Dec, 2009

I made my way down to Copper Mountain in Colorado to watch the first stop of the Grand Prix and a chance for riders to make their way to the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.  I missed the women’s qualifiers yesterday but today I was able to watch the men’s qualifiers and tomorrow I’ll see the final best riders throw down in the superpipe.

There was a total of 87 male snowboarders in three heats spread out from 9am to 2pm and two runs that determined everything for them.  Their best score mattered most and at the end of the day, the best of those riders will continue onto the finals.

Shaun White took home 1st place

Louie Vito took home 2nd place and stomped his double cork.

Greg Bretz took home 3rd for the qualifiers tweaking big!

Thanks to Pat Bridges for telling me I shouldn’t miss the Grand Prix contest, because of him I made my way down to check it out. It was insane to see the amplitude of the tricks and be surrounded by riders I’ve heard of for years.

I ran into Greg Wyman from 686 who showed me how to be a action sports photographer, I’m still working on the perfection of that look.

Boards were getting tuned to perfection at the top of the superpipe so each rider had it dialed for speed!

For the first heat I took some photos from the deck and then moved down to the bottom of the halfpipe to meet with Fuse Marketing’s Heather and Nike 6.0’s Sierra.

Myself with Sierra and Heather

The constant pitter of twitter going on at the bottom

We ended up watching the first heat from the bottom and talking snowboarding.  The first heat had some rough crashes, I really hope Jeremy Thompson and Van Bjoern Dongen get back to the snow and aren’t too badly injured.

The Judges and announcers section at the bottom of the halfpipe

The second heat I took a couple laps with T-bird, Heather and Sierra for some awesome turns on the mountain.  It was a good break from the contest and after we enjoyed some lunch.

Louie Vito was all smiles hiking up the halfpipe.

Snowboarder Magazine’s Pat and Snowboard Revolution George on hand to capture every moment

I took the majority of photos during the first and second heats today and here’s a variety of shots I got on the mountain.  I didn’t write down the tricks so sorry for not naming everything that the riders did on the mountain.

Danny Davis

Dustin Craven

Dylan Bidez

Jack Mitrani

Kevin Pearce

Zach Black

Staale Sandbech airing over Pat Bridges

Pat Bridges at the end of the day checking out his captured moments

Snowboarder’s T-bird and Greg Betz at the end of the qualifiers celebrating

Tomorrow is the Grand Prix finals where the men and women from qualifiers will be bringing their best tricks to the pipe.  I’m stoked to see the finals and especially the women throw down, so expect a lot more photos and fun times on the mountain tomorrow.

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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  1. FLuiD
    December 11, 2009

    Nice..thanks for sharing! Love the pics but still miss the bigger ones… 🙁 I know I know new blog format but just giving you grief!!! Looking forward to tomorrow’s finals coverage. Pat Bridges has the same camera I have lol, Canon G11!