Sebastian Toutant takes his fourth title at the 2012 Ride Shakedown
None other than hometown rider Sebastien Toutant was crowned title in the final of the 11th edition of Ride Shakedown presented by Videotron at Mont St-Sauveur, Saturday. It was a beautiful conclusion to two days of intense competition in slopestyle snowboarding that drew a record crowd of 25,000 people.
All 35 riders pushed their limits in the semi-final an effort to impress the judges enough to move one step closer to the coveted title. Their determination didn’t stop them from giving the fans a show as always and sending adrenaline levels through the roof.
The long-awaited final came down to the top 10 athletes. Riders were allotted 90 minutes in which they were required to perform three judged runs. The best two runs combined to form the final score. This laid-back approach, at the heart of the Ride Shakedown’s unique competition format, is highly appreciated by athletes; it allows them to perform to their full extent and give the crowd a show.
Top honors and the $20,000 purse went to Sebastien Toutant, making this title his fourth since his first win in 2006. The 19 year-old claimed this 11th edition with his signature Tootsie Roll off the jump – a backside 1080 double-cork and a frontside-bluntslide 450-out on the rail.
“That’s the Ride Shakedown! Each year I stomp my first run, but always fall on the second. I kind of like to put some pressure on my family and keep the crowd waiting”, joked the rider who equally earned second place in Friday’s Coors Light Rail Jam.
“On my last run, I knew I could have won it with a 720, but I went for a trick that I hadn’t tried at all during the competition. I’m really happy to have landed it and earned my fourth podium”, specified Toutant who also won in 2006, 2009, and 2011.
Underdog Seth Hill of Jacksonville, Oregon, earned his second place finish for his frontside 1080 off the jump and 50/50, backside 360-out on the rail. The 24 year-old was the only American in the final and walked away with a $10,000 purse.
Norwegian Kim-Rune Hansen closed out the podium with a frontside 1080 on the jump, which he followed up with a backside lipslide on the rail. This was the 23 year-old’s first appearance at the Ride Shakedown and leaves it $5,000 richer.
This year at the Ride Shakedown, the hefty $50,000 total prize purse was extended past the podium. Antoine Truchon (21 years old) of Sainte-Adele, Quebec, and Jason Dubois (21 years old) of Stoneham, Quebec, each walked away with $3,000 and $2,000 for their respective fourth and fifth place finish.
The crowd was treated to a slew of events throughout the day, such as the Snowboard Canada Magazine autograph session and the customary Push.ca halftime show. The latter took place on the same setup used by snowboarders, where J.S. Lapierre earned best trick and $2,000 for his frontside lipslide.
“Over 25,000 people attended the event, which has now become an absolute must in Canada. More and more people travel to be at the Ride Shakedown, which increases interest in our sport and in our athletes. It’s great news!” exclaimed Patryck Bernier, co-founder and producer of the largest slopestyle snowboarding competition in the country.
Equally enthusiastic, Brendan O’Dowd, Berniers partner in crime when it comes to the Ride Shakedown, has no intention of quitting while he’s ahead. “We want to continue to help the sport evolve by presenting it to the largest amount of people possible and by bringing together the best athletes across the world.”