Created: 03 April 2019

Zeb Powell took home top honors in the Hard Rock Riviera Maya Rail Jam Tuesday night. Silver and bronze went toDavid Retzlaff and TJ Fitzgerald respectively.

One of the highlight competitions of snowboard week at the 2019 USASA National Championships went down on on Tuesday night at the Centre Village base of Copper Mountain Resort, as Zeb Powell and Alexis Roland took top honors at the Open class rail jam in front of an enthusiastic crowd.

More of a party atmosphere than of a competition, the rail jam format sees heats of riders dropping more-or-less at will during a 25-minute session to hit one of the roughly ten jib features (depending how you count ‘em) spread out across a small hill at the Copper base area, with judges scoring riders based on tricks, style, variation, ingenuity, and overall impression.

It’s a free-flowing spectacle, fun for fans and riders alike. And, on Tuesday, some of the best in the business put on an exciting show.


Roland, of the Upper Midwest Snow Series, was one of the night’s most consistent riders, moving from feature to feature easily and stomping a myriad of tricks across them all – including frontside boardslides and switch frontside boardslide through the massive kinked rail – to take the ladies’ contest.

Second and third place went to a pair of Colorado locals, as Lauren Derminio took silver, and Ellie Weiler rounded out the podium in third.

Over on the men’s side, the Southern Vermont Series’ own Zeb Powell was the standout rider of the evening, attacking the Nationals rail jam course with abandon and at one point blowing the roof off of the place by launching a backside rodeo off the wallride and over the downrail to flat that was the fan-favorite trick of the evening. Throw in the fact that he spent his entire night of riding while clutching a teddy bear and you’ve got a winning score of 1375 and an iconic gold medal-winning performance.

“Honestly, I had a lot of butterflies going into it tonight,” said Powell after the awards ceremony, “I didn’t really expect to do that well. I don’t even think I did that well. But I just tried to go out and have some fun and it paid off. It’s pretty cool to finally place at my last nationals.”

Second place for the guys went to David Retzlaff of the Rocky Mountain Series, while third place went to another Southern Vermonter, as TJ Fitzgerald earned bronze. 


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