Highest air on a quarterpipe-world record
set by Simon Dumont
12] BETHEL, ME, USA--Skiing prodigy and X Games star Simon
Dumont established a new world record for highest air on a
quarterpipe as he launched 35 feet into thin air at his home
resort of Sunday River in Maine.
Photo: The freeskier Simon Dumont setting a
world record by soaring 35 feet above a quarterpipe ramp /
Christian Pondella-Red Bull Photofiles
A two-time X Games gold-medal winner known
for big air, Dumont achieved the feat on a 38-foot ramp specially
constructed of snow for his record attempt. In the air he
pulled a cork 900, an off-axis spin of two and a half rotations.
The previous record of 32.5 feet above a quarterpipe
was set by the snowboarder Terje Haakonsen in 2007.
On the world's tallest quarterpipe (38-feet
tall and 78-feet wide) custom-built by Snow Park Technologies,
and with a representative from FIS (Fédération Internationale
de Ski ) on location to document the record-breaking moment,
Dumont beat previous record holder Terje Haakonsen's 32 feet
6 inches during his last day of attempts. (enlarge
Soaring a breathtaking 73 feet above
the ground -- more than a seven-story building -- this hometown
hero sent the intimate crowd of family and friends into a
frenzy as they witnessed the record-breaking moment.
"I wasn't sure how this would all go down today
with the wind and some healing injuries I've been nursing,"
says Dumont. "As I was dropping down the hill into the run-in
it just hit me that this would be it -- the rest is history."
Although Snow Park Technologies has built countless
quarterpipes over the years, this was the first developed
specifically for a single athlete.
"Building a quarterpipe for just one athlete
exactly the way he wants it is unique for us," says SPT's
"I'm super excited to be a part of this project
... after seeing Simon get huge airs in the halfpipe at the
X Games, we were hoping he'd go for the record."
After two days of framing the quarterpipe
with a snowcat, and three days of precisely hand shaping the
38-foot wall from the top down, Howard along with fellow SPT
builder Jeremy Carpenter had done all they could do. It was
time for Simon to get to work.
At 9 a.m. Friday morning Simon showed up
with his game face on and was ready for his final attempts.
After an hour of repeatedly hitting the quarterpipe, at 10:12
a.m. EDT Dumont hiked an additional 15 feet up the hill to
gain more speed. Simon crouched into a tucked position going
55 mph down the in-run and not only launched 35 feet into
the air, but spun a 900 in the process (a trick where the
athlete spins 2.5 complete rotations in the air).
So, with the mission accomplished for 21-year-old
Simon Dumont, what's next on the horizon? "I plan to go film
for the rest of the season, then take a good vacation this
summer before refocusing on next year," says Dumont. Photo credit:Christian Pondella-Red