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2012 Winners iON Showcase Awards and Canon Shootout

Lake Wanaka, NZ (16 August 2012) -Skier Jacqui Edgerly (USA) and Snowboarder Will Jackways (NZ) took centre stage at the World Heli Challenge ION Showcase Awards tonight (August 16) where they were named the XFactor Awardees for World Heli Challenge 2012, as another successful World Heli Challenge came to an end. In a first for the World Heli Challenge, skiers and snowboarders competed together for the top spots with only one male and one female taking the honours.

Narrowly missing the top spots were snowboarder Abby Lockhart (NZ), skiers Natalie Segal (Australia) and Markus Eder (Italy).

Jacqui and Will were chosen based on their overall aggressive performance and not necessarily on points earned during the competition.

“Jaqui took the prize to Alaska for her determination and amazing line choice pushing her limits,” said head ski judge Dion Newport. “Showing why she was invited to the WHC by skiing a line on the extreme day that had a lot of exposure and risk. Not landing her run put her back in second position but her amazing show for the camera’s and viewers earned her the XFactor Award.”

“Will stood out during both days of competition,” said head snowboard judge, Mike Hygemann. “He had an amazing first run in the freestyle day where he showed great control and use of terrain pulling off 360 spins, a tail grab air, a method air and an indy…an excellent run from the kiwi. The extreme day saw him taking a very challenging line which he executed with aggression and style.”

In addition to competitor awards for best performances on the snow, the best images and cinematography captured throughout the two-week event in the Canon Shootout were also screened and announced to the packed Wanaka Centre audience and to a global audience via live webcast.

Photography

Seven top photographers vying for this year’s Canon Shootout photography awards created over 25,000 images, capturing the action and the lifestyle of the event, which will be viewed around the world. Each photographer submitted one image from each category to be judged.

Winners were as follows with a $1,000 cash prize in each category:

Best Extreme Day Shot Antony Hansen
Best Freestyle Day Shot Miles Holden
Best Carlton Dry Branded Shot Mitch Stubbs
Best Exide Batteries Heli Branded Shot Tess Carney
The Canon Shot Mark Von Roy

All photos entered in the competition are featured in a gallery on the World Heli Challenge website and can be viewed on the World Heli Challenge facebook page.

Cinematography

The outstanding cinematography showcase commenced with a five-minute overview of the two weeks of the 2012 World Heli Challenge produced by the talented Harro Art Production team lead by Trinity Ludlow.

The audience was treated to five mind-blowing five-minute mini documentaries. It wasn’t an easy decision for the judges as each film captured the spirit of the two-weeks of heli-accessed skiing and snowboarding and all of the off-snow adventure from a different perspective.

“Each and every film transported the audience inside the unique experience that is the World Heli Challenge,” said event founder Tony Harrington.

Winners were as follows with a $1,000 cash prize in each category:

The Canon Shootout Best Documentary Tomohiro Fujji
Best Carlton Dry content placement Tomohiro Fujji
Best Extreme Sequence Mic Simpson
Best Freestyle Sequence Mic Simpson
Best ION POV use Sean Balmer

The five-minute World Heli Challenge overview and all mini-documentaries will be available to view on the World Heli Challenge Website Friday morning.

The Winners

The finale to the evening was the announcement of the 2012 World Heli Challenge champions. The athletes were able to share their winning runs on screen to a packed house in the Lake Wanaka Centre.

Individual winners from each day’s competition are as follows:

Freestyle Day

Snowboard Women
1st place Abby Lockhart
2nd place Ratty Sheidow
3rd place Jett Elkins
Snowboard Men
1st place Will Jackways
2nd place Shin Biyajima
3rd place J.J. Thomas
Ski Women
1st place Natalie Segal
2nd place Jacqui Edgerly
3rd place Victoria Beattie
Ski Men
1st place Markus Eder
2nd place Nick Devore
3rd place Sam Smoothy

Extreme Day

Snowboard Women
1st place Abby Lockhart
2nd place Ratty Sheidow
3rd place Jett Elkins
Snowboard Men
1st place Will Jackways
2nd place Shin Biyajima
3rd place Antti Autti
Ski Women
1st place Natalie Segal
2nd place Jacqui Edgerly
3rd place Victoria Beattie
Ski Men
1st place Neil Williman
2nd place Markus Eder
3rd place Nick Devore

Overall

The overall winners (best all around skiers and snowboarders) were chosen for their performance over the two days of competition (Extreme Day and Freestyle Day).

Top Three Female Skiers
1st place Natalie Segal
2nd place Jacqui Edgerly
3rd place Victoria Beattie
Top Three Male Skiers
1st place Marcus Eder
2nd place Nick Devore
3rd place Sam Smoothy
Top Three Female Snowboarders
1st place Abby Lockhart
2nd place Ratty Sheidow
3rd place Jett Elkins
Top Three Male Snowboarders
1st place Will Jackways
2nd place Shin Biyajima
3rd place Antti Autti

Event organisers continued with the innovative online judging format, drawing on the experience of internationally regarded judges from around the world to review each run and analyse in detail when deciding this year’s winners.

Dion Newport and Mike Hygemann were the onsite ski and snowboard judges and were able to consult with the “virtual” judges about the day’s conditions and any other specifics that may not have been discerned from the videos.