Much like Tony Hawk’s name has become synonymous with the world of skate boarding, Shaun White defines the sport of snowboarding for many fans. This year’s Winter Olympics have given Shaun a grand stage, upon which took the gold medal in the Men’s Halfpipe event earlier this week. Astoundingly, it was a never-before-seen maneuver that he employed to win gold. To perfect his Double McTwist 1260, Shaun shrunk years of Olympic training and preparation into a few weeks with the help of Red Bull, who sponsors White. That’s because they built him secluded and completely incredible practice pipe in the backcountry wilds of Colorado. And the called it Project X.
Located seven miles away from Silverton Mountain, Red Bull constructed a perfect halfpipe by dropping explosives from a helicopter to trigger landslides before having the world’s best pipe-shaper come in to finish up the job. You read that right – they threw bombs from helis. Finally, they added a 7,000 block foam pit at the bottom of the half pipe for Shaun to practice his insane/amazing gravity-defying tricks into. All this so that White could develop his latest moves in complete secrecy, hidden away from the prying eyes of his competitors. Yeah, we’re blown away, too.
Check out RedBull’s site dedicated to the secret project to watch Shaun’s new moves and learn about how Project X all came together.