This week marks the 32nd Annual Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships taking place in Vail, Colo. The event touts itself as the world’s greatest snowboard event and awards prize money to match. A total of $343,000 will be awarded to top riders, with the first prize winners receiving $45,000.
March 5 was the first day of competition at Golden Peak, showcasing men’s and women’s Slopestyle Semi Finals. Prior to that, riders had two practice days on March 3 and 4, each with morning and afternoon sessions lasting two hours each.
March 6 will feature Halfpipe Semi Finals, which is live streaming now on Burton’s website.
March 7 will be Slopestyle Finals and that evening there will be an awards ceremony and a free concert. Saturday, March 8 will wrap up the competition with the Halfpipe Finals, the awards ceremony, a free concert and a closing party.
This year’s competition has attracted big names like Kelly Clark who won Olympic gold on the halfpipe in 2002 and Jamie Anderson who took just gold in Sochi at the first-ever Olympic Slopestyle event. The Men’s events have attracted snowboarding stars as well. U.S. Boarder Danny Davis will be competing in Slopestyle and Halfpipe alongside more than 50 other talented snowboarders from around the world.
The first U.S. Open Snowboarding Championship was held in 1982 at Suicide Six in Vermont. Jake Burton Carpenter, U.S. snowboarder and founder of Burton, was at the first competition. By 1986, the competition had begun gaining popularity, as more than 200 competitors showed up for pre-qualifiers. By 1996, snowboarding was making its debut in the Winter Olympics and the U.S. Open was more popular than ever before. Through the years and countless changes to the competition, the Open has held its esteem throughout the snowboarding community. This year’s event is set to be one of the most exciting and well attended events in U.S. Open history.