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Friday 22 September: After a tantalizing wait for snow and weather conditions to align the first “Buller X” extreme freeride competition got underway at Mt Buller yesterday afternoon in superb spring conditions.
Australia’s freshest elite snowsports freeride event took place in the steep ‘double-black diamond’ rated terrain off Mt Buller’s summit with an enthusiastic crowd of onlookers taking up viewing points in resort and an international audience tuning in for the live webcast.
An international panel of judges reviewed all the runs and settled on Coen Bennie-Faull and Nate Johnstone as the overall winners for ski and snowboard respectively.
Bennie-Faull and Johnstone were unanimous choices by the entire judging panel and the athletes’ own vote for their courageous line choices and superb execution on the steep course.
“It was an incredible display of Australia’s rich freeriding talent and I am blown away by the lines these athletes produced for the first ever Buller X presented by Rip Curl. They are all world-class,” said event founder and director Tony “Harro” Harrington.
“It’s a daunting exercise to put 19 athletes through such a technical course in a tight weather window and do it safely. It’s thanks to a tight, professional team here at Mt Buller this has been possible and I think we inspired a few people today with the show these athletes put on. The athletes picked some intense lines and put on a jaw-dropping show. I don’t think anyone at Mt Buller will look up at these chutes in the same way again after seeing what these skiers and boarders were able to do in there.”
Coen Bennie-Faull and Nate Johnstone have each won a ‘money-can’t-buy prize’ from Jackson Hole Mountain Resort in Wyoming, USA. They are heading off to film with the Teton Gravity Research film company while exploring the majestic Teton Range this northern winter. Teton Gravity Research is regarded as snowsports most progressive and award winning production company who produce documentary work with the world’s best skiers and boarders.
Thanks to event supporters for making this all possible: Mt Buller, Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management, Rip Curl, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Teton Gravity Research, Giro Australia, Volkl, le Bent, XTM Performance and HarroArt.
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