Friday January 15th, 2016

Each Friday in The Weekender we take a look at the best videos from the week that was—like Sean Pettit’s full part from Masquerade or Bode Merrill’s Broken Mechanism—and give you a preview of some of the most important events in the world of action and outdoor sports this weekend.

Broken Mechanism

Short films are great. Last week at the Outdoor Retailer show in Salt Lake City, Snowboard magazine released a mini-documentary starring Bode Merrill, a talent unlike any other in the industry today. Equally gifted in the park and in the backcountry, Merrill, 29, carries himself with an air of humility. And that’s really what makes this film work. Interviews that sound like they were done over the phone are laid over Merrill’s unending highlight reel, with the voices singing the snowboarders' praises for him: “(Bode Merrill) doesn’t get that what he does is insane. He just thinks it’s fun.”

Surfing and Fashion

In somewhat curious placement, six-time world champ Steph Gilmore talks surfing technique with Vogue. With the video set on the North Shore of Oahu, Gilmore raps on positioning, wave choice, the impact zone and having fun for the women’s magazine. While we’re not sure if many surfers are going to look for hints in the world’s largest fashion pub, they may find interesting fitness tips: the video is part of a fitness series and the first episode has fashion model Martha Hunt taking part in a surfing-inspired workout in New York City.

The Highest of Times

This is definitely Tanner Hall as you’ve never seen him. One of the most transcendent and influential freeskiers in the sport’s history sits down with High Times magazine to talk cannabis, his addiction to painkillers, his wrecks and subsequent injuries, and about his late friend, CR Johnson, another influential freeskier who was killed at California’s Squaw Valley in 2010. Hall may well be one of the best skiers of all-time—but he’s an even better interview and he’s at his candid best in this smoky session.

Rocket Man

Sean Pettit’s skiing definitely deserves to be set to an all-encompassing ballad like Elton John’s Rocket Man. This week, Pettit, who’s one of the most stylish freeskiers in the sport, released his full part from Masquerade, the second film from his production company, Super Proof. Pettit, who’s just 23, has been a sponsored athlete since he was 13 and two years ago, decided to take matters of the lens into his own hands: he wanted more creative control over the ski movies he starred in. Mission accomplished—Masquerade has a cinematic feel and the slow motion shots go perfectly with Elton John’s 1972 hit, especially the vertical ice wall slides at 3:05.

What’s On Tap

Todos Santos Challenge | | Sunday, 11 a.m. EST

El Niño is paying huge dividends this year in the world of big wave surfing. Big Wave World Tour commissioner Peter Mel has hit the green light for the Todos Santos event this weekend in Baja, Mexico. Todos Santos is a large, right-hand wave that has played a huge part in the history of the sport. The start is expected to see a strong swell with set waves upwards of 40 feet. Todos Santos is the second event of the 2014-15 big wave season following the Peahi Challenge, won by Maui’s Billy Kemper in December.

Monster Energy Supercross | FS1 | Saturday, 10 p.m. EST

After last weekend’s event in Anaheim that got plenty physical, the Monster Energy Supercross series heads to San Diego with plenty on the line in this early season warm up. Cooper Webb and Jason Anderson, who won last weekend’s 250 SX and 450 SX divisions respectively, will try to extend their points leads. It was Anderson’s first win in the 450 SX class but, with another win, Webb can move up to 18th on the all-time wins list in the 250. He has enjoyed five straight wins in the class going back to last season.

Alpine World Cup | | Saturday, 6:30 a.m. EST

Both the men’s and women’s U.S. alpine ski teams have big weekends ahead. The women continue their technical races in Flachau, Austria while some 13 U.S. men will make starts at the World Cup downhill event in Wengen, Switzerland. This is the 86th running of the Lauberhorn Downhill, the longest downhill course on the circuit at 2.78 miles. Some 30,000 spectators are expected to attend.

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