From Snowboarder Magazine's Rider of the Year to National Geographic's Adventurer of the Year, 2012 has been a time of accolades for Travis Rice. The year also marked the launch of Supernatural, his own groundbreaking big mountain-with-artificial-obstacles competition. But for the man considered by many to be the world's best all-around snowboarder, developing the event wasn't enough. He also went out and won it.
When it comes to dominating a sport, surfer Kelly Slater has firmly established himself among the likes of Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong. In 2011, at the age of 39, Slater won an unprecedented 11th ASP World Tour title, 19 years after winning his first. His incredible longevity and consistency in the sport is evidenced in the fact that he is both the youngest and the oldest person to claim surfing's top title.
When it comes to the world of motocross and supercross, there is no more dominant rider than Ryan Villopoto. In 2012, he successfully defended his AMA World Supercross title, winning nine of the first 14 events and becoming the only rider in history of the sport to clinch the title four races early. As if that wasn't impressive enough, he is also the reigning 2011 AMA Motocross champion, Motocross Des Nations champion and Monster Energy Cup champion.
With his Vert gold at X Games 2011, Shaun White found himself atop the podium at a summer X Games for the first time since he won the same event in 2007. But he's been no stranger to that spot at the Winter X Games. At Winter X Aspen 2012, White landed back-to-back double cork 1260s, earning a perfect score on his way to his fifth SuperPipe gold medal, completing the event's first five-peat in Winter X history.