17 stops after it had begun, Volcom Stone's 2011 North American PBRJ tour concluded with the $25,000 PBRJ Championships at Mammoth Mountain, CA on Saturday April 16th, 2011!
The best of the best amateur snowboarding talent descended upon the sun-baked slopes of one of the world’s most renowned snow resorts. Josh Chauvet, Joanna Kaylor, Molly Dawoud get the job done in a hands-on fashion and really go out of their way to ensure T’s are crossed and I’s are dotted!
Jeff Arnold briefing the astronauts prior to blastoff!
Michael Gregory and the Unbound terrain park team do an absolutely incredible job. No expense is spared in terms of manpower or equipment used and all the effort that went into it was clearly evident. For this season’s PBRJ Champs, the Unbound crew put together a unique and challenging contest site. “Zone 1” consisted of an imposing 20-stair feature flanked by both a round bar and down-flat-down rails. “Zone 2” was a half-pyramid to down-lift tower and zone 3 was a two C-rails set up to form a complete S-rail! This was the most challenging feature but all the pre-qualified riders possessed the skill to handle it.
Jacob Krugmire, lipslide to f/s 270 out in zone 1
The 15 & Under group of riders were the first to get a crack at Mammoth’s PBRJ Champs setup. Just a few minutes into the first heat it was clear that the riders had dispensed with any pleasantries and instead were focused on blowing the judge’s minds! This may have been generated by the PBRJ champs atmosphere or all the talented riders, but whatever the reason, the groms got down to business and put on a show for the ages!
Consisting of dizzying tricks and blaring music, the 15 & Under finals heat will be talked about for quite some time! Tightly clasping a big check at awards was Brandon Davis in 1st (2000), Brandon Milam occupied 2nd ($1500) and Jake Aaronson placed a close 3rd ($1250)!
Here’s a shot of the PBRJ Champs contest site from a lift tower
The judges barely had time for a bathroom break before the 16 & Over group were on the scene and terrorizing the three features selected by Mammoth’s Unbound Terrain Park madmen! As expected, the talent on display was nothing short of mind-boggling. Throngs of rabid spectators encircled the PBRJ contest site and vied for a prime location to take in the heavy tricks doing down before them. The insane riding had our judges scribbling like madmen and burning through ink like an 18th century wood stove heating a farmhouse! Shortly afterwards, robust applause were directed at Nick Kolkman for his 1st place performance ($2000). Cole Schneider, who took 2nd ($1500) and 3rd place’s Will Ermish ($1250) also rode extremely well and were just a few points back!
Frontside boardslide, zone 1
The Girl’s Open division was up next and was the most incredible riding we’ve every seen from the ladies in the PBRJ’s history! With riders representing Canada, Japan, France and the US, it was truly an international collection of talent all throwing down tricks that are typically reserved for the guys. Not here, not now. I observed all of our judges shaking their heads in disbelief at one point or another! When the snow settled and the free PB&J was devoured, Japan’s Miyabi Onitsuka claimed 1st ($2000), Canada’s Brook Voigt 2nd ($1500) and the US’ Vanessa Moore 3rd ($1250)!
Frontside boardslide, zone 3
Last but certainly not least, it was time for the Men’s Open division to remind us all how inadequate our snowboarding ability is. Every single one of the riders carry ‘local hero’ in their respective areas and it was easy to see how much they wanted to take their notoriety to the next level. Being unfamiliar with the art of losing, these guys were determined to take a spot at the podium at any cost. As a result, the level of riding went to ridiculous heights and was simply one of the most competitive heats in the PBRJ’s 10-year history! Emerging from the throng of talent was Jesse Paul in 1st ($2250), Ryan Paul in 2nd ($2000) and Brett Strother in 3rd ($1500).
Heavy on the style with a side of lipslide, zone 1
Ryan Paul took home $1000 for winning Electric’s “Gooeyest Move”!
Thanks to all of the riders, parents and friends who made the pilgrimage to Mammoth for the 7th annual PBRJ Championships! Of course, thanks to Josh Chauvet, Molly Dawoud, Michael Gregory, Joanna Kaylor and everyone else at Mammoth and in particular, their Unbound Terrain Park crew. Words can’t describe how much all the years of PBRJ support mean to us over here at Volcom. Thanks to Mike Pettit, Chris Demolski and Steven Woolworth for judging as well as Chris Martinez and Tyler Abrahamson for all their support from A to Z! Thanks to all of our PBRJ tour sponsors below for supporting the PBRJ tour with extra prizes!