What up NS,
I just got out of the Athlete Lounge in Whistler Village with the results from the qualifiers for the World Skiing Invitational Slopestyle that went down today in the Blackcomb Terrain Park. If you haven't seen it already, check out the photos of the course in the Whistler park update- this is a pretty damn sick set-up: a flat rail into an option of the shack booter or a hip that riders have been boosting straight over, then another option of a triple kink (f-d-f-d) or a creative but not very trickable up-box onto a butter pad with a drop-off at the end. From there the riders hit the channel gap and then the money booter, with a quarterpipe at the bottom. We'll have photos of this up as soon as possible.
Anyway, the competition was pretty sick today. It got a bit snowy and foggy and some of the competitors who forgot to wax were casing the landings. Spinning onto rails, clearing the hip, hitting the channel gap switch and NOT throwing a flair on the QP were all ingredients of a winning run. The 58 registered riders were divided into two heats and got two runs each, with their best scoring run kept to decide who'd go on to the big show tomorrow. The top two qualifiers from each heat would advance, along with the next three top-scoring runs from both heats.
The locals stole the show in Heat 1, with Riley Leboe (second place) and Justin Dorey (third place) of Silverstar both destroying the course as if they'd grown up skiing with TJ Schiller and Josh Bibby. Whistler's own Charley Ager took the heat by going bigger than anyone else with switch spins both directions and a ridiculously massive 540 on the quarterpipe that most competitors had previously been hitting half-heartedly. Evan Wilcox took fourth and a spot in the finals.
In heat 2, favorites Corey Vanular (who until this morning wasn't registered) and Austin Ramaley took second and third, while Matt Hayward took the top spot. I didn't see the run or I'd tell you what he threw.
I'm gonna go take off my ski boots now- I would have done it already but I told Harvey last night that we were going to school him with coverage and I gotta keep my word.
Check back tomorrow for slopestyle results and pictures! Video is on the way, too.