After two rather uneventful seasons in terms of performance, Xavier Bertoni proved that he could still ski at the level. For him, the 2012 winter was tainted by injury after injury: first his thumb at the Copper Grand Prix, then his nose at the X Games in Aspen, finishing with a fractured symphysis during training in Tignes. With a 6th place at home despite his injury, and offering all his fans a level of skiing he hadn’t shown for a long time, Xavier is on track to rip it up next season!
The 2012 Tignes Winter X Games was on THE FRONT PAGE
460 – that is the number of official journalists at the 2012 event. More than 500 articles have already been written and 2,000 hours of TV in 198 countries have already been counted.
Kids’ days: more than 800 young people from the region were invited to planet freestyle
3 years ago, Hervé Gaymard, President of the Savoie county council, Pierre-Marie Charvoz, Vice-president of the county council (Culture - Education - Sport - Youth - Activities) and Olivier Zaragoza, Mayor of Tignes, had the vision and belief to give school children from the Savoie region the wonderful opportunity of discovering the scope of this event, which has been all the rage in the States for 18 years now.
They pulled it off: within 3 years, more than 800 young people attended the X Games with the agreement of the Education Authority, which had backed this project from the start.
Flash back to 3 days of entertainment marked by the special guest that everyone was waiting for: the flying American, Shaun White, who certainly lived up to his reputation.
Shaun White: the boss
Everyone was waiting for him. Would he or wouldn’t he come? For 2 years, the flying redhead kept everyone guessing up until the last minute before finally choosing not to attend the first two Winter X Games in Tignes.
During the Men’s Snowboard SuperPipe Final, he gave an amazing show in front of an audience he’d clearly won over.
Having bagged two gold medals in Tignes (in the SuperPipe and the Slopestyle), Mr White, who already had 17 medals before arriving in Tignes, 12 of which were gold, became one of the great names of the Winter X Games. While we’re at it, let’s not forget his two Olympic titles in 2006 and 2010.
As for his image, this guy is “bankable”: having earned more than 7 million dollars in 2011, he is the tenth best-paid sportsman in the world according to the 2011 rankings in Forbes magazine. It is a fairytale story for this young man who was born with a heart defect and twice had open-heart surgery before he was even a year old. It’s a happy ending, just how they like them in America!
Having granted interviews to a few hand-picked journalists in Paris where he lives and in Tignes, with great diplomacy, he voluntarily participated in the traditional press conferences organized at the end of each competition with the 3 medal-holders, in the press room. It was there that he announced that “Tignes was better than Aspen” and that he would “have to come back and defend his titles in 2013”! According to Louie Vito and Iouri Podlatchikov, all they need is a pair of tight-fitting trousers and longer hair to compete with the star…
Thomas Krief comes back into the limelight
And how did the Frenchies get on? Having lost their leader Kévin Rolland to a knee injury, the French team found themselves another star. 18-year-old Thomas Krief from the Alpes d'Huez won the silver medal in the Men’s Ski SuperPipe just behind 16-year-old American Torin Yater–Wallace, and in front of the great favourite, another Yankee, David Wise.
And after all this? The X madness continues! The Tignes Winter X Games have been confirmed for 2013 and 2014.
This exciting news was made official during the opening press conference on Tuesday 13 March 2012 in the press room: ESPN and Canal+ Events confirmed the renewal of the Tignes Winter X Games in 2013 and 2014. Some extra competitions may also be added to complete the event such as the Big Air, the Skiercross and the Boardercross. But all of this will be confirmed soon!
A year ago, ESPN decided to extend the organisation of the Winter or Summer X Games into 6 towns. To date, only the Summer X Games in Los Angeles and the Winter X Games in Tignes have been confirmed. 4 other towns are still in the running. Names are being mentioned such as Aspen and Whistler for the Winter Games, Barcelona, Munich, Rio and Lisbon for the Summer X Games. The results are out at the beginning of May.
Watch this space…
From 14 to 16 March 2012, for the third consecutive year, Tignes played host to the best freestylers in the world.
In three years, the Tignes Winter X Games has earned its place as a highlight of the European winter sporting calendar.
In three years, this event has gone from being considered an enormous surprise to being a resounding success as much for the public as for the publicity spin-offs. Canal + Events reminded the media this week that the Tignes Winter X Games was the largest French production of a winter event. With the absence this year of the World Championships and Winter Olympics, and of course the cancellation of the World Cup due to lack of snow (Val d’Isère for Alpine skiing and the Grand Bornand for the biathlon), the Tignes X Games truly became the winter success story.
Images of our resort were broadcasted in more than 200 countries with almost 2,000 hours of television broadcasting.
One telling statistic: there were more than 103,500 spectators over the 3 days compared to 75,000 in 2011. The famous Kandahar alpine ski race in Chamonix provides us with another comparison. It attracted 35,000 people during the 3-day competition last January. The Snowboard SuperPipe final with the undisputed star of the discipline, American Shaun White, attracted that many people alone…