Jeremy Cloutier gets crowned RIDE Shakedown Rail Jam King
Photo: Crispin Canon
Round 2 of the RIDE Shakedown USA kicked off today with the amateur qualifications and rail jam competition at The Summit at Snoqualmie. The event’s long awaited return was greeted by eager athletes at the resort located a short 45 minutes from Seattle. As the night winded down, the crowd cheered on the Rail Jam finals and a much welcomed snowfall.
A total of 24 amateur athletes from North America competed for their chance at the RIDE Shakedown semi-finals against world-renown professionals. In the end, only three riders were given the privilege to move on to the next round. It came down to the day’s movers and shakers Pat Lynch from Big Bear City (CA), Caden Michnal from Kalispell (MT), and Mitch Richmond from Mammoth Lakes (CA).
Of the 16 amateurs, Pat Lynch and Mitch Richmond also qualified for the Rail Jam semi-final alongside Derrek Lever of Edmonds, WA, to compete against the pros in the semi-final.
Photo: Crispin Canon
Rail Jam title goes to Jeremy Cloutier
The lineup for this year’s Rail Jam competition was impressive. Topping the list of pro invites was last year’s Rail Jam winner and local Austin Hironaka, looking to defend his title. Also present were Ryan Paul hailing from Cottage Grove Minnesota, and Quebec native Jeremy Cloutier. The setup design was tricky; requiring all 32 riders to really focus on speed and technique.
The result was an exciting show where the only two Canadians partaking in the final took top honors. Jeremy Cloutier, who placed 3rd at the 2009 RIDE Shakedown, proved his reputation as a rail king by putting in two solid runs that gave him enough of a lead to skip out on his third and claim first place. His best of the two? A frontside 180 gap, switch backside 360-out on the kink rail. As for RIDE Shakedown DE 2011 winner Matts Kulisek, he earned another podium finish and $2,000. Not to be forgotten is Johnny Lazz. The rider from Carnelian Bay finished in third, earning $ 1,000.
As of 11 am on Saturday, March 19, the RIDE Shakedown semi-finals will begin. Watch your favorite pro riders give it all they’ve got in an effort to make it through to the final. At 1:45 pm catch some face time with your favourite pro snowboarders at the Snowboarder Magazine autograph session before they gear up for the long awaited final round. A special appearance from Seattle’s Blue Thunder Marching Band will drum up a beat sure to get the adrenaline going for both fans and athletes. They will lead in to the 3:30 pm finals. Prepare to watch it all unfold as the weekend’s best athletes battle it out to be crowned champion of the RIDE Shakedown USA!
Still have energy? At 10 pm, come join us for the official RIDE Shakedown afterparty presented by Arnette at the Snoqualmie Casino! The party will be off the hook with a live show by Del the Funky Homosapien and DJ Sean Cee spinning all night. Get your tickets at the door for $15 or $10 in presale at ticketmaster.com (21+).
Unique competition format
While there are many snowboarding events in United States, the RIDE Shakedown stands out by virtue of its unparalleled competition format. What makes the RIDE Shakedown such a hit and a cut above the rest is its unparalleled competition format. The concept: a laidback, live-it-up event with minimal restrictions on the riders. Spectators are taken to the very heart of the actio1n and treated to a thrill-a-minute show that’s eminently accessible. At the RIDE Shakedown, riders are required to master two different disciplines: Big Air and rail, featuring three different rail options revealed only on the first day of competition. Competitors and fans alike look forward to the moment. While pros are the main attraction, amateurs are also in the game, as they valiantly battle it out in an attempt to make a name for themselves. Every winter, new talent is discovered!