X Games 2013: A Report from the Younger Generation

While the level of riding and technical progression at the X Games is always impressive, it’s the stoke it generates in the younger generation that offers real value to the culture of snowboarding—the same kid buying Shaun White pajamas at Target might be inspired to dig a little deeper into snowboard culture as he grows up. It can serve as an introduction to riding for those in less-snowy climes, inspiration to try something new for those of us blessed with plentiful snowfall.

For the 2013 version of the X Games, we were lucky enough to have a couple of special media representatives onsite: 10-year-old Max Loeb (son of PNW legend Jason Loeb) and 12-year old Zach Murdia. Here we offer their raw, mostly-unedited take on the 2013 X Games from a couple kids who were very excited to be there with the rest of the snowsports media. Kids that were star-struck by the likes of Lago and White—who feed off contest stoke and who follow the example set by riders at the top of the contest game. Who are down with candy in the podium club and lazers in the air. A perspective, I might argue, that matters more than what an aging editor thinks of anyone’s extra 180 or foot of air. Read on…

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I think the X Games are cool because of the tricks the snowboarders do. I could not do most of the tricks they were doing. It was great being at the X Games and it was also my first X Games.

I never got to meet Shaun White but that didn’t bother me. When I saw Scotty Lago fall right when he came into the pipe I was shocked. Then I saw him climb back into the pipe they didn’t let him go again, I wish they did.

It was an amazing experiences at the X Games. I really like how close the snowboarders get. The 14-year-old [Ayumu Hirano] was a really good snowboarder for a 14-year-old and I can’t believe he got the silver medal. I also like the podium club the food there is pretty good and it also had candy. I remember all the tents up and lazers and all the horns they threw at the audience. It was crazy.

-Max Loeb, Age 10

The X Games were sweet. From the insane rail jam to the awesome men’s snowboard superpipe final with pro boarders Scotty Lago, Ayumo Hirano, Greg Bretz and even Olympic Gold medalist Shaun White. It was insane, he would get over 20 ft. on his first jump! I was really surprised by that, right off the bat he would get 15-20 feet of air and at one point he jumped 24 feet! That was crazy, all three of his runs were flawless and he obviously had no trouble pulling it off.

But that wasn’t the only amazing act there. Ayumu Hirano,14-years old from Japan, was awesome! He got so much air time and he did lots of crazy double corks and stuff. It was really cool, he did a really good job. I personally wanted him to win, but Shaun White’s tuff to beat! But what an inspiration, he medaled silver and he’s only in 8th grade! He also fell when he was warming up and got really hurt! That was really scary, he didn’t even stand up after he fell down. But after 30 minutes or so he was flying down the superpipe like a jackrabbit on steriods! What an inspiration, he’s only 14 and he’s competing with Shaun White! That’s incredible, that’s what the X Games should be like. Good athletes that are really passionate about their sports, competing against each other for fun, and good sportsmanship.

But it was also really cool because I actually meet Shawn White! In fact, he even shook my hand and stopped to take his picture with me! It was so cool, after a little interview with the X Games people he started to make his way through the fading crowd of people. So I went up to him and tried to give him a high-five when he reached out and shook my hand! Then he put his arm around me and he took his picture with me. I couldn’t believe it. At that moment in time I had met Shawn White.

I also met Greg Bretz and Scotty Lago, which was pretty sick! Greg Bretz even signed a phone case that I got with his name and picture on it. That’s what’s also really awesome about the X Games, it doesn’t matter if you’re a normal person just going to watch and take in the X Games or if you have backstage, V.I.P. passes to the athletes and all the special areas. You will always have fun, no matter what. It’s a great event and I had a blast!

Even though I had media passes to the X Games lounge, it wasn’t nearly as fun as watching all the events. I would probably give my X Games experience an 8 out of 10 stars. Some of the people who worked there were really uptight and just unreasonable. One person that worked their made us wait 45 minutes to go up to the super-pipe. They said it was “too full and at a maximum capacity” and then they said ,“The ramps to icy, no one can go up until we scrape off the steps”. Which were made entirely out of snow and don’t take 45 minutes to clean off! But those were the only disappointing things about the X Games, other than that it was epic!

All the events were really cool and awesome. My favorite event was probably the Mens Super-pipe final, because of the awesome tricks and how exciting the event was. It was just insane, everyone was just super excited and stoked to be their. So that was cool. Overall I had a great X Games experience and would definitely do it again. I would probably recommend this to someone who likes to have fun and has the patience to deal with large crowds. But anyone would enjoy the X Games, it’s exciting and awesome and you might even be on TV. It’s just a good time.

-Zach Murdzia, Age 12


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