Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Winter X Games

Winter X Games 13 took place last weekend, January 22-25, in Aspen-Snowmass, Colorado (USA). The annual Winter X Games is the premier winter action sports event in the world, featuring athletes from across the globe competing in three sports: Ski, Snowboard and Snowmobile. All Winter X Games competitions took place at the resort’s Buttermilk Mountain. Participants compete to win bronze, silver and gold medals, and prize money.
The X Games is an annual multiaction sports event. ESPN, The Worldwide Leader in Action Sports, first developed its X Games franchise in 1995. Today, the X Games are the biggest action sports events in the world. The games are broken into seasons: the Winter X Games—held in January or February—and the X Games—usually held in August. The location of the Winter X Games is in Aspen, while the location for the Summer X Games is in Los Angeles through 2009. ESPN and the Aspen Skiing Company have reached an agreement that will keep the Winter X Games in Aspen/Snowmass through Winter X Games 16 in 2012. The announcement was made one day prior to the official start of Winter X Games 13, the eighth straight Winter X Games held at Buttermilk, one of Aspen-Snowmass' four ski mountains.
Winter X Games originally rotated on a regular basis. The inaugural event was held in Snow Summit Mountain Resort, Calif. (1997), then it moved to Crested Butte, Colo., for two years (1998-1999) before moving east to Mount Snow, Vt. (2000-2001). It has been in Aspen since 2002. As part of the new agreement, the Winter X Games will remain in Aspen/Snowmass for a total of 11 consecutive years (2002-2012).
Since Winter X Games Six in Aspen (2002), the event has seen significant growth: attendance has nearly doubled; the event is now live on ESPN and ABC; SportsCenter is now televised live on site; and a multitude of ESPN media platforms regularly cover the event. Last year’s telecasts garnered record viewership, averaging 863,000 homes, up 17% from 2007.
Concurrent with competition was the "X Fest" sports and music festival, which offers live music, athlete autograph sessions and interactive elements.
The X Games also has international competitions and demos around the world that are held at varying times throughout the year.