Words: Kevin Scherwin
Photos: Rocky Maloney
The Gallivan Center in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah hosted a three-day festival celebrating the New Year. With ice-skating, live bands, DJ’s, and ski/snowboard rail jams, the event titled "Eve" had fun for EVEryone, EVErywhere.
Local skiers lined up to kick off the USANA Rail Jam on Tuesday, December 29th, going head-to-head for a chance to proceed to the final rounds of “The Jam.” Thirty competitors split into two-hour long heats and showed their best jibbin’ skills on three separate features: a tear box on skier’s left, a down-flat-down shotgun rail on skier’s right, and a proper gap-to-down box in between the two.
The youngest kid in the competition killing it...watch out for the invasion of the groms.
Snow conditions were relatively poor, making the setup fairly slow and competitors very frustrated. The gap-to-down box proved very difficult to reach; in fact the only skier making the gap comfortably was Jeremy Kisser, displaying the hops of a kangaroo and a variety of tricks on the feature. Tosh Peters made the gap with help from McRae Williams and Carl Fostvedt, who grabbed a pole each and launched Peters to the box, landing a solid nose press.
As the night progressed, the snow was repeatedly packed down by the riders, which increased the overall speed of the course. However the competitors still preferred to start at the raised in-run meant for the gap-to-down box for the other two features, which were definitely the most popular to hit.
Giray Dadali and McRae Williams had the highlights of the heat, both stomping 360 switch-ups on the down-flat-down. Adam Battersby, Carl Fostvedt, Tosh Peters, and Jeff Kiesel all showed amazing rail control with switch ups every which way. Peters experimented with some hippy-killing techniques and Kiesel had the balance of a ninja with nuggets for days. Battersby had the tricks on the down-flat-down and the tear box, but couldn’t seem to stomp the majority of them, probably due to a recent injury that kept him from competing in Dew Tour at Breckenridge, CO just two weeks ago. However, he made it out with a solid front-swap to pretzel 270 out on the tear box, and a spot to the finals.
Unfortunately having to miss the first heat of the qualifying competition, my video coverage shows the riders warm-up before the event and the second heat of the qualifying competition:
Qualifiers. Song by DJ FLESHlite
After a 48-hour rest, the finalists returned to the Gallivan Center to throw down yet again, only this time for a chance to win some cash. What’s a better way to start out the New Year than with $300 in your back pocket?
The riders were stoked to ski on the newly iced and salted park, which made the speed much better and the probability of fresh tricks higher. The difference in riding compared to two days prior was significantly better with a broader variety of tricks and use of all the features. The gap-to-down box was hittable and most of the riders took advantage of that with 270's on and attempts of 450's on.
Khai Krepela slaying to claim his 1st place position.
McRae Williams took 2nd place.
Giray Dadali took 3rd Place.
The ski division of the rail jam concluded with Giray Dadali taking thirrd, winning $50, McRae Williams in second, winning $150, and Khai Krepela snagging the first place spot, taking $300 to start of 2010 in a great way. The ladies held it down as well competing alongside the boys, with some stellar performances on the metal from Catherine Warchall and Kristi Giles. The park was reshaped to get ready for the snowboarding finals, which had a much bigger crowd turnout, but obviously wasn’t as cool...Live bands continued to play until midnight when everyone dispersed and went off with their party subgroups to make some bad decisions and overall good times…
The happy winners claimed their money and some fresh new Snuggies...
HAPPY 2010 WORLD!