Burton Launches Limited ‘Icons’ Snowboard Collection
Burton is excited to announce the release of the “Icons” Collection – four boards that showcase the brand’s history of rider-driven innovation in partnership with the sport’s most legendary personalities. The limited-edition collection of re-releases features the 1987 Elite, the 1995 Kelly Air, the 1996 Dolphin, and the 2011 Nug – all available for purchase on Burton.com beginning May 2, 2023.
The Icons Collection draws from Burton’s deep archive, celebrating Burton’s era-defining approach to board designs. First up is the 1987 Elite, a board that carved its own path by focusing on a flex and stance geared toward new riders wanting to develop their skills. “As snowboarding grew, we needed a board that would support smaller riders learning the sport,” says Lesley Betts, Senior Hardgoods Strategy Product Line Manager. “The Elite was designed for lightweight riders who wanted to progress— this is a high-performance snowboard built for a variety of snowboard conditions with the intention of improving.”
Next is the 1995 Kelly Air, the pinnacle of freeride progression, shaped by four-time World Champion and Burton US Open Winner Craig Kelly for backcountry pursuit. A soul rider with the eye of an engineer, Kelly saw another path in snowboarding that wasn’t happening in the industry— this was the board that would take him, and generations to come, there. “As Craig moved away from competition and into a freeride mindset, he wanted something that would charge hard and lay out steep turns,” says Betts. Inspired by the legendary riding of its designer, Burton Team Rider Danny Davis made a quick connection while testing this re-release. “Craig built this board for riding big faces,” says Davis. “It was about large freeride terrain with a narrow waist width, but it still resonates deeply today. With a lot in the marketplace for snowboards that are soft, floaty, and maneuverable, the Kelly Air re-release suits strong riders with the fervor to go fast and ride smooth, while exerting minimal pressure to the slope.”
A year later, Burton welcomed ground-breaking rider Shannon Dunn Downing to the team. Her 1996 Dolphin was Burton’s first women’s pro model, refined for a softer flex and feel, while elevating the freestyle prowess that Shannon would continue to push for years to come. “I’m proud of the mark this board has made for women not only in snowboarding, but in the world at large— the Smithsonian will feature this board for its inventive contribution to women’s sports. The Dolphin was truly ahead of its time because it remains a cutting-edge freestyle snowboard board to this day,” says Shannon Dunn Downing.
The 2011 Nug rounds out the Icons Collection. Breaking with existing snowboard norms years before volume-shifted shaping became a hit design trend, its long effective edge and a poppy nose tail featured sizing that could be ridden 8-10 centimeters shorter than regular. The Nug’s loose, fast-turning, freestyle focus turned every bump on the mountain into a playground, earning it a dedicated following— while its unconventional development helped shift Burton’s design philosophy. “The original Nug was built around fun, but it also unlocked new opportunities for how to think about team-driven shape development,” says Betts. “Without that out-of-the-box thinking we wouldn’t be where we are today with our Family Tree collection.”
Each of these four boards became an instant classic, shining a spotlight on Burton’s dedication to innovation across the decades. With the Icons Collection, Burton is excited to share the re-release of these influential boards with today’s riders and highlight the brand’s heritage of listening to riders, leading with change, and disrupting convention for the sake of fun.
In 1977, Jake Burton Carpenter founded Burton Snowboards out of his Vermont barn and dedicated the rest of his life to snowboarding. Since its founding, Burton has played a pivotal role in growing snowboarding from a backyard hobby to a world-class sport by creating groundbreaking products, supporting a team of top snowboarders, and pushing resorts to allow snowboarding. Today, Burton designs and manufactures industry-leading products for snowboarding and the outdoors. As a sustainability leader within the outdoor and winter sports industries, Burton is the world’s first snowboard company to become a certified B Corporation®. Privately held and owned by Donna Carpenter, Burton’s headquarters are in Burlington, Vermont with offices in Austria, Japan, Australia, Canada and China. For more information on Burton, head to www.burton.com and follow our line at facebook.com/burtonsnowboards, twitter.com/burtonsnowboard and @burtonsnowboards on Instagram.