XG Aspen 2017 ZOOM In Review
Introducing ZOOM, The Competition
X Games Aspen 2017 introduced a new competition to the fold: The inaugural ZOOM Photography Contest, putting six finalist images from the monthly X Games ZOOM photo gallery to the ultimate test, featuring an online fan vote to award one talented photographer a new X Games gold medal in photography and $10,000 cash prize. Featured here are the six finalists.
Prime time placement
Finalist images were printed large on a movable panel on the new XHQ host set as Allison Hagendorf and Jack Mitrani were joined by guests like Sage Kotsenburg throughout the X Games Aspen 2017 broadcast.
The new ZOOM large format light boxes were placed in the X Games Interactive Village to draw attention to the contest. Throughout the weekend, X Games Aspen 2017 attendees stopped to marvel at the images.
ESPN The Magazine feature
The January 27 "Super Bowl Preview" issue of ESPN the Magazine featured a spread of Zoom finalist images as well as a call to action to vote to their 2 million subscriber base.
Daily announcements in the X Games venue for fans to vote drove thousands online to pick their favorite, while the backlit displays illuminated the night time village walkway.
Each finalist generated short videos about their passions in photography and the story behind the image, with clips interspersed throughout the long weekend national broadcast.
Saturday shout out
X Games photographer and photo editor Brett Wilhelm joined Allison Hagendorf and guest Silje Norendal on the host set Saturday evening at X Games Aspen 2017 to call attention to the public fan vote to the national TV audience as the clock ticked towards midnight Saturday when voting closed.
Yoshida takes the win
In the end, it was Mike Yoshida's remarkable image of Jake Blauvelt dropping in to a massive Haines Alaska face that surged ahead in voting, earning Yoshida the inaugural X Games gold medal in photography and $10,000 cash prize.
Jake Blauvelt, Haines, Alaska
"Jake Blauvelt and crew had been eyeing this line all day. The clouds finally parted so they could ride it. The look of fear on Jake's face after losing the rock-paper-scissors throw for first drop made me feel a little uneasy. When he dropped in, though, I knew everything was all good. Jake thrives under pressure, and his confidence showed while he nimbly destroyed this line like it was just another run." -- Mike Yoshida