Believe it or not, the Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour is getting ready to kick of the 2010/2011 season with the 5Star Billabong Ante Up big air event going down at Camp of Champions on June 26th, 2010 in Whistler, B.C. Canada.The inaugural 5Star event has a premiere lineup of riders trekking from across the globe to compete for a share in the $50,000 prize purse and the first batch of 850 Swatch TTR points. As an added bonus, the man who takes the first place podium spot at the Ante Up will receive an automatic invite to the legendary 6Star Billabong Air & Style Innsbruck.
Big names on the rider list, large tricks on tap?Although the event is only one day of competition, the organizers have built in a five-day holding period to ensure the riders have optimal weather conditions. The Ante Up will feature an international field of 40 invited riders including heavy hitters such as Seb Toutant (CAN), Marko Grilc (SLO), Torstein Horgmo (NOR), Scotty Lago (USA), Chas Guldemond (USA), and Charles Reid (CAN) making for some solid competition. And, with Horgmo’s recent success in landing a triple-cork in Norway this spring, the Ante Up could see some next-level trick attempts on the massive 85-foot step-over jump. All the action from the Blackcomb glacier can be viewed live via webcast at www.billabongpro.com beginning at 11 pm CET on June 26, 2010 (depending on weather).
Getting a head-start in the 2010/11 Swatch TTR points race?The Billabong Ante Up is the first major event for the 2010/11 TTR World Tour season which will give riders, especially North Americans, an opportunity to rack up some valuable 5Star Swatch TTR points before the tour heads down to the Southern Hemisphere. Many riders attending the Ante Up, especially those like Chas Guldemond, Mark McMorris, Marko Grilc, Gjermund Braaten and others, who finished in the 09/10 TTR Top 25 will have the opportunity to set themselves up nicely in the 10/11 points race. A good result at the Ante Up combined with their 09/10 season-end bonus points will result in a healthy padding leading into the big picture of the 2010/11 season.
Southern Hemisphere on the horizon?After the Ante Up, the Swatch TTR Tour will take a break until the next big event on the calendar in August, the 5Star Burton New Zealand Open, and then things will shift to Australia for the 4Star Stylewars and a handful of 2Star and 3Star events. Check out ttrworldtour.com for the complete Southern Hemisphere calendar of events.