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Posted on February 16th, 2009 by Spencer

The Winner:
Sage Cattabriga-Alosa
Under the Influence
Teton Gravity Research

In one of the closest contests of the 2009 Powder Video Awards, Sage Cattabriga-Alosa edged out Tanner Hall for Best Male. As one panel voter put it, “For doing what he does best, Sage out-shined everone.” Or, as another said, “If Sage doesn’t win, this thing is a joke.” Sage combined steep, technical, scary Alaska lines with deep Wyoming powder shots and spins and flips to put together a mind-blowing segment for TGR’s Under the Influence. This is Sage’s second Best Male Performance award. He also won in 2004 for his role in TGR’s The High Life, a year after winning Breakthrough Performer.

The Winner:
The Fine Line
Rocky Mountain Sherpas

A combination of top flight ski footage and avalanche awareness, The Fine Line is ski porn with a public service message. Featuring the best skiers in the world, dramatic avalanche footage, solid editing and good information that all skiers should be aware of, The Fine Line keeps viewers entertained while educating them.

The Winner:
Ingrid Backstrom
Matchstick Productions

The reigning queen of big mountain skiing, Ingrid maintains her grip on Best Female Performance with another stunning segment with Matchstick Productions. Backstrom shreds big lines in Alaska and stomps solid cliff airs in and around her home mountain of Squaw Valley. Ingrid is a multi-time winner of Best Female and has been leading the charge in women’s skiing since her breakout performance in 2005’s Yearbook.

The Winner:
Matchstick Productions

Best Cinematography is a new category designed to award creativity and good camera work. With multiple awards and an Emmy nomination already to their credit, it’s no surprise that Matchstick Production takes home this award. Long heralded for their point of view shooting, amazing locations, and super-slo-mo shots, Matchstick has established themselves as the kings of ski film production.

The Winner:
Sean Pettit

Sean first appeared in Powder Magazine as a quiet 11 year-old full of potential. Now 16, Pettit has just begun to realize that potential. Pettit put produced the closing segment for Matchstick Production’s Claim featuring a combination of big mountain and freestyle that almost secured a Best Male Performance. Throw in Pettit’s segment from The Massive, and you have a collection of work that’s well worthy of a Breakthrough Performance. Sean narrowly beat out Tim Durtschi, who also appeared in two films and established himself as a skier to watch in coming years. In the end, however, Durtschi is a little more established and experienced, giving the nod to Pettit for the 2009 Breakthrough Performance.

The Winner:
Simon Dumont
Matchstick Productions

Maybe more than any other PVA category, Best Manmade Air seems to be the innovation award. Each year, skiers boost a park or backcountry kicker and spin inverted in some weird way while grabbing in a new, wild way leaving any spectator completely baffled. How in the world they visualize and, subsequently, perform these tricks is mind-blowing. Add in the element of height and distance, hence risk, and it makes for an innovative category. Although his trick has been done before, no one has ever gone higher in a quarterpipe than Simon Dumont. So high, 35 feet, that he was able to spin a cork 900 while grabbing tail. Who does that? Simon Dumont, the world-record holder for a quarterpipe air that’s now a Guinness World Record by beating out snowboarder Terje Haksonen. Oh yeah, he’s now a first-time winner of Best Manmade Air.

The Winner:
Sage Cattabriga-Alosa
Under the Influence
Teton Gravity Research

Outside of Movie of the Year and Best Male Performance, Best P.O.V. proved to be the most difficult category to judge in 2009. With nearly every skier sporting a helmet cam these days, they are capturing on-slope perspectives never before seen. Add in the evolution of cable cams, helicopter cameras, and follow cams, and viewers are watching more moving perspectives than ever. But it’s hard to deny the on-slope perspective, especially when Sage Cattagbriga-Alosa skis a steep, blind spine line on dreamy Alaskan snow. Instantly, the viewer feels there with Sage as you wiggle and gasp and hoot as he descends.

The Winner:
Seth Morrison
Under the Influence
Teton Gravity Research

Eliciting some of the loudest oohs and ahhs from the audience during the red-carpet event, this award goes to the skier boosting the biggest air. In years past, the winner was usually the person who sent the biggest cliff, windlip, or cornice. But like every Powder award, a trick thrown off said geologic feature now requires a trick. Although 16-year-old Sean Pettit, Mark Abma, and Tanner Hall all trick off cliffs, perennial Natural Air winner Seth Morrison reigns again in 2009. Who else throws a giant front flip into a steep Alaskan spine line and stomps the landing? No one. And that’s why the 35-year-old Morrison takes home another Best Natural Air award.

The Winner(s):
Mark Abma, T.J. Schiller and C.R. Johnson
Matchstick Productions

The reason we ski. The reason we sacrifice nearly everything—jobs, relationships, responsibility, sanity, etc. Powder skiing. All four of these nominees ski some of the lightest, deepest, most blower powder of their lives. But the trio of Mark Abma, T.J. Schiller and C.R. Johnson skied the most crystallized version of snow in MSP’s Claim while skiing at Monashee Powder Cats in the interior of British Columbia.

The Winner:
Will Wesson
Head for the Hills
Meathead Films

Handrails, concrete walls, trees, boxes, fences, picnic tables—all these inanimate objects are used for jibs. And despite Tanner Hall’s rodeo 9 and Sammy Carlson’s slide to back flip Japan, Will Wesson was Mr. Creativity in 2009. In fact, Wesson broke the Powder Video Award record for most nominations in one category in one year. From underslides, to innovative playground lines, the East Coast kid takes home Best Jib with his skillful and completely comedic playground line.

The Winner:
Hunting Yeti
Nimbus Entertainment

A ski movie filled with top quality imagery that is less than a half-hour is unheard of these days. In whittling down hours of webisodes, however, Nimbus editor Eric Pollard created a beautiful piece that comes in at 23 minutes. The brevity is a breath of fresh air among ski films that often run over an hour. Nimbus also uses multiple interviews spliced to together to intelligently transition into each new section, giving the film a soulful feel, and completes that feeling with a passionate, classic rock soundtrack.

The Winner:
Sage Cattabriga-Alosa
Under the Influence
Teton Gravity Research

Three years ago, Sage Cattabriga-Alosa and the TGR crew showed up in Haines, Alaska, and ogled over the Hotel Room face, an intimidating yet beautiful Alaskan face with streaking spines running from top to bottom. It looked formidable, nearly unskiable, it was so steep and challenging. That year, Sage was not able to ski due to conditions and comfort level. Three years later, in 2008, Sage and co. returned. After legendary big-mountain riders Jeremy Jones, Jeremy Nobis, and Seth Morrison declined to ski Hotel Room, the Sandy, Utah, resident spoke up and said he wanted to ski it after visualizing the line for three long years. What transpired after standing atop the hanging cornice with Seth Morrison is history. In a death-defying descent that makes any viewer feel as if they have their stomach in their eyeballs, let alone their throat, Sage Cattabriga-Alosa skis the line with confidence and knowledge after three years of constant analysis.

The Winners:
1. Seth Morrison

Seth is 35 years old and went to high school in Vail, Colorado. He now lives in Frisco, Colorado.
Seth won the Full Throttle award at the 2008 Powder Video Awards.
He has finished first or second in all nine Powder Reader Polls. This is the third year in a row he has won the Reader Poll.
Last season, Seth filmed with Teton Gravity Research, where his big-mountain footage from TGR’s Under the Influence is some of the best ever caught on film. .

2. Tanner Hall

Tanner is 25 years old originally from Kalispell, Montana, and he could be the most versatile skier of all time.
He now lives outside Park City, Utah.
As of 2008, Tanner had won seven Winter X Games medals, tied for the all-time lead.
He is also a two-time Powder Magazine Male Skier of the Year, whose film Believe won Movie of the Year in 2008.

3. Sage Cattabriga-Alosa

Alta, Wyoming, native who got noticed ski bumming at Alta, Utah, where he was washing dishes at the Peruvian Lodge.
Sage won his first Powder Video Award in 2003 as Breakthrough Performer, and followed that up a year later with Best Male.
Multi-dimensional and multi-talented, Sage was originally known for his high-flying leaps over Chad’s Gap in Little Cottonwood Canyon. Since then, he has become one of Teton Gravity Research’s best big-mountain skiers.

4. Mark Abma

Two-time Male Skier of the Year who grew up skiing little Hemlock Valley in British Columbia, and is nominated again tonight. He now lives in Pemberton, B.C., about a half hour north of Whistler.
He’s also nominated for Best Powder and Best Manmade Air.
This year Abma appeared in two films that are up for Movie of the Year, Claim and Reasons.

5. Pep Fujas
Oregon native who now resides in Utah, Pep has gone from WX Games Slopestyle medalist to one of today’s most influential skiers.
As part of Nimbus Independent, Pep has joined Eric Pollard, Andy Mahre and Chris Benchetler to expand on their vision that ski films should be about sharing the experience of sliding on snow.
Also filmed with Poor Boyz Productions last season.

The Winners:

1. Ingrid Backstrom
A Washington State native who now lives in Squaw Valley.
Ingrid is quickly becoming the most decorated skier at the Powder Video Awards and Reader Poll.
Ingrid has now won the Reader Poll four years in a row.
She’s been named Best Female three times, and is nominated again tonight.

2. Sarah Burke
One of the most influential women skiers of the modern era, Sarah Burke is nearly single–handedly responsible for getting women’s halfpipe skiing into the X Games.
In 2008, she won WX Games gold as well as the ESPY for Action Sports Female Athlete of the Year.

3. Grete Eliassen
Grete stormed onto the scene in 2007 by winning Best Female at the Powder Video Awards with her film segment from Poor Boyz’ Ski Porn.
One of the most versatile female skiers, Grete can do everything from slopestyle and pipe to big mountains in the backcountry.

4. Lynsey Dyer
Sun Valley native turned Jackson Hole resident turned Victor, Idaho, homeowner.
Lynsey has become TGR’s most recognizable female skier.
Recently launched SheJumps, a non-profit organization that seeks to empower young women.

5. Ashley Battersby
A perennial favorite at the Powder Video Awards and Reader Poll, Ashley has kept her place in the ski world despite being setback by a series of injuries over the years.
Chicago native who transplanted to Park City, Utah, in 2002 to sustain her dream of being a pro skier.
Loves rails and a freshly carved pipe.

The Winner:
Seth Morrison

One of the most coveted awards by athletes, Full Throttle is for the calculated charger that skis everything with speed, fluidity, and stomps or comes close to stomping all the big airs. And no surprise, Mr. Seth Morrison takes home the prize with his jaw-dropping performance in Teton Gravity Research’s Under The Influence. Sending big airs, outskiing his slough, straightlining the steepest of lines, and integrating a degree of fluidity and control makes Seth the winner for 2009.

The Winner:
Photographer: Adam Clark
Skier: Sage Cattabriga-Alosa
Location: Haines, Alaska

One of the more difficult categories to judge due to the sheer volume of awe-inducing photos, the Salt Lake City duo of photographer Adam Clark and skier Sage Cattabriga-Alosa win Photo of the Year in 2009. Clark took the shot from a barbie angle while Sage dropped in from the pyramid-shaped peak, traversed for a good long ways, and then pointing it straight down a too-long spine. The photo appeared in the September 2008 Shooting Gallery.

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