Photos: Air + Style LA is the “biggest city big air ever”

Photos: Air + Style LA is the “biggest city big air ever”

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First hosted in Innsbruck, Austria, in 1993, Air + Style is recognized as one of the most influential snowboarding events, period. Through the years, Air + Style has made its way from Innsbruck (1993-1999, and 2008-2013) to Munich (2005-2008, and 2011), Seefeld (2000-2005) and Beijing (2010-2014). To date, more than half-a-million spectators have witnessed the contests live. Legends like Terje Haakonsen, Shaun White, Kevin Pearce, Travis Rice and Mark McMorris have all been crowned Air + Style champs, and today, all A + S contests boast 6-Star status on the World Snowboard Tour—the highest ranking there is.

In 2014, golden boy Shaun White became the majority shareholder of Air + Style Company, and he was quick to make moves. This season, Air + Style comes to the U.S. for the very first time; the action kicks off tomorrow from Pasadena, CA. Skiers have also been invited to the party—another first. For the two-plankers, the contest is certified AFP Platinum, securing it as one of the most prestigious events of the year.

There has certainly been a great deal of hype surrounding skiing’s inclusion in this famed event series, and after laying eyes on the venue for the first time today, and having spoken with all of the competitors, one thing is clear: Shaun White and co. have certainly constructed a setup worthy of the athletes’ approval.

Listen: Matt Walker confirms Air + Style LA is the “biggest city big air ever for skiers.”

The big air showdowns will surely impress event-goers, but the fun hardly stops there. Eighteen top-class musical acts are set to perform across three different stages this weekend, ensuring massive attendance. On Saturday, 2/21, 16 heavy-hitting snowboarders including the likes of Mark McMorris and Sage Kotsenburg will square off on the big air jump. Music-wise, we’ll see acts like Kendrick Lamar, Diplo, Portugal. The Man, Phantogram, The Black Lips, Metz, Bad Things, In the Valley Below and Teenage Wrist.

On Sunday the 22nd, skiing’s top big air talent will take to the skies: Alex Bellemare, Øystein Bråten, Bobby Brown, Joss Christensen, Vincent Gagnier, PK Hunder, Gus Kenworthy, Kai Mahler, Noah Morrison, Alex Schlopy, Jesper Tjäder, Matt Walker, Tom Wallisch, Jossi Wells, Oscar Wester and James Woods are all slated to compete. Music acts on Sunday include Steve Aoki, The Flaming Lips, Edward Sharpe and Magnetic Zeros, Sleigh Bells, Cults, Deap Vally, Surfer Blood, The Black And The White and Tennis System.

Spectators can purchase a day pass for $50, or two-day pass for $90, here.

Local skiers who attend on Sunday can expect the following big-air format:

Round 1 (not head to head):

16 skiers, three runs each, best two scores count—top 10 overall advance to Round 2, 11th-16th place skiers eliminated from further competition.

Round 2 (head to head):

10 skiers, five head-to-head match-ups (seeded from Round 1), three runs each, best two scores count, five winners advance to Super Final.

Super Final (not head to head):

Five skiers, three runs each, best two scores count.

For those who can’t make it, be sure to follow along with our coverage. FREESKIER will be on-site through the duration of the event, providing you with regular updates via freeskier.com, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat.

Additional information is available via air-style.com.

Related: Boom! The World of X Games presents Air and Style: Los Angeles

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