When The Lights Go Down...

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Thursday night on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Mayor Bloomberg declared February 5th, 2009 “Snowscrapers Day” in front 30,000 plus screaming New Yorkers. Granted there were several thousand Jersey kids from across the river attending as well to cheer on local boy and eventual winner Shayne Pospsil.

But before the madness could kick off Snow Park Technologies and Red Bull worked their butts off to make the massive drop in ramp and hip work for the dimensions they were held to by the city. At first it was hard for the riders to gain enough speed, but after several attempts at different forms of speed the riders chose the old fashion method – the two-man / human slingshot. To which Oakley Snowboard Sports Marketing Manager, Matty Swanson stepped right in to assist with for each rider’s drop in.

Practice saw some gnarly crashes and Dustin Craven goofing off by bonking the top of the hip to tripoding down the landing zone. Finally about halfway through the practice session Shaun White showed up and the crowd went nuts for the redheaded session. And speaking of redheads, Susan Sarandon and her son Miles attended the event to watch their favorite riders Travis Rice and Shaun White compete. Susan arrived right as finals kicked off in the black Gretchen Bleiler Mane Jacket and signature GB Ravishing sunglasses; her son Miles wore the <a href-“http://oakley.com/catalog/products/enlist-jacket” target="_blank">Enlist Jacket in Nickel.

Before the contest got started the riders all met on the yacht to discuss the format and Terje downed a quick drink of courage. As the sun set on the city skyline, the crowd began to heat up in the single digit temperatures of the Lower East Side. The open format of the elimination round was full of different tricks and some really good slams. But by 7pm there were only eight riders remaining for the finals, Oakley riders making the cut were Shaun White, Torstein Horgmo, Terje Haakonsen and Bjorn Leines.

As the finals began the hip really played the biggest factor as riders had a hard time landing tricks, but this did not stop Terje Haakonsen from sticking a one-footed method grab over the hip gap. The trick would earn Terje “Best Trick” for the contest and send the Viking home happy to Oslo, Norway for The Oakley Arctic Challenge, which kicks off next week.

Making it to the final two was Oakley’s Torstein Horgmo and Jersey boy Shayne Pospsil. When it was all said and done Torstein continued to have troubles with the drop in ramp and Shayne would walk away with the $50,000.

Big ups to Oakley’s presence at the first major snowboarding contest ever in NYC, from the Rolling O Lab crew set up at the base of the hip landing to the Sports Marketing Team to the athletes killing it on a tough jump.