By its very nature, the action sports world produces landmark moments on a regular basis, with individuals consistently pushing the limits of what everyone thinks is possible.
Looking back on 2010, there are countless examples of this; here are five of our favorites from the Red Bull family of athletes.
Five Notable Action Sports Moments from 2010
#5: Carissa Moore Plows Through Portugal
In her first full year on the ASP World Tour, young surf phenom Carissa Moore definitely served notice that she’s already a major player among surfing’s elite. She earned her second win of the 2010 Tour near Peniche, Portugal in October at the Rip Curl Pro (pictured above), posting the highest heat and wave scores throughout the event.
Moore tore through her competition to meet reigning ASP Women’s World Champion Stephanie Gilmore in the Final, demolishing her by a score of 17.44 to 8.60. The 18-year-old Moore had missed the previous event in Peru to attend her high school graduation, and went on to finish 3rd overall for the year. Carissa’s already proven her championship skills, and with school and her rookie year behind her, 2011 is sure to bring even bigger things.
Honorable mention: Sally Fitzgibbons was amazingly consistent throughout the Tour, never finishing out of the top five and landing in 2nd overall. Sally and Carissa had some great match-ups this year and will no doubt be battling once again for the top spot in 2011.
#4: Daniel Dhers Returns to Glory
Venezuela’s Daniel Dhers is an unbelievably dominant force in BMX Park competition. From 2006-08 he pulled down three Dew Cup overall championships and three X Games medals (two of them gold), making him the guy everybody was gunning for in 2009. His extraordinary streak was interrupted that year, but he took no prisoners in 2010, battling back to re-capture X Games gold and end the year with his fourth Dew Cup title.
Dhers has been doing Red Bull Under My Wing clinics in Colombia, Chile and Peru this fall, helping his fellow South American riders brush up on their skills and maybe even follow in his footsteps. Daniel’s got pretty big shoes to fill, however, and he’s nowhere near backing down just yet.
Honorable mention: Shaun White missed the first Dew Tour Skate Vert event of the year with an injured ankle, but came back to win three straight events in Portland, Salt Lake City and Las Vegas. Amazing!
#3: Medal Mining in Los Angeles
You’ve already seen Dhers in action at X Games above, but he wasn’t the only Red Bull athlete to leave Los Angeles with gold around his neck. 15-year-old Pedro Barros made the trek all the way back to Brazil with his new hardware, shaking up the old guard by qualifying in the number one spot in Skateboard Park and taking it all in the Final.
Flowy lines at speed, melon 540s and big transfers helped put him on top. On the Skate Street course, Ryan Sheckler came through in the clutch once again, edging out Nyjah Huston for his third XG gold. Sheckler dropped a kickflip backside boardslide and a cab 360 lipslide down the rail, a backside flip up the gap and big frontside airs in the teacup, among other things. Red Bull teammate Ryan Decenzo swooped in for bronze.
Of course, these weren’t the only Red Bull shredders to earn X Games medals – check out our Top 5 Favorite Motorsports Moments of 2010 for more…
#2: Red Bull Rampage Ramps Up
As the world’s premier freeride mountain bike event, Red Bull Rampage has always been about progression. That’s no easy task in this sport, when new moves carry the risk of mighty consequences. Red Bull Rampage always provides the venue for things to get crazier, however, and the riders never hesitate to bring out their best for the event.
When Oakley’s Icon Sender appeared on the 2010 course, Cameron Zink called out a 360 drop early on, but with many riders hesitating to make the drop at all, the 360 seemed impossible. Zink made good on his prediction with a near-perfect attempt in his first run, returning to nail it and the rest of a strong line to take the victory and move the sport another step forward.
All of the riders made huge contributions this year, but Zink definitely topped the highlight reel.
#1: Shaun White Pushes It in Park City
White chose Park City in January to drop the double McTwist 1260 in his run, scoring a near-perfect 49.5 out of 50, winning four out of the five Grand Prix events for the season and earning a spot on the U.S. Olympic snowboard team. He went on to win a gold medal in Superpipe at Winter X Games (becoming the first athlete to three-peat the event) and successfully defended his gold at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Not too shabby, eh?
Other Notable Action Sports Moments from 2010:
- Kelly Slater wins a record 10th ASP World Title
- The release of Mat Hoffman's Birth of Big Air documentary
- Skier Grete Eliassen sets a new women's big air record
- The surfing world - and the world at large - mourns the loss of Andy Irons
Do you agree with this list? If not, let us know by leaving a comment below.