A lot of people have said this to me, and I find it interesting. There was never any stipulation that you must be un-sponsored to compete. Only that the winner must take the brands headlining the event as their sponsors, even if they already have others.
The truth is, this event isn't about sponsorship. It's about exposure. Whoever wins this gets into so many other comps and events. At least half the competitors are sponsored. It's definitely not a beginners comp, it's more for those who are good enough to be pro, but havent got the exposure. If someone feels they can't win this comp because sponsored kids are in it, they would have no chance at all doing the masters, etc.
Now that I've got that out of the way, I think it will be one of the sickest comps of the season. Such a good selection of skiers are in it. It's a team managers dream for finding new talent. So everyone in it, even if they don't win, has a good chance to get their name on the scene.
As for when different athletes runs are, I'm not sure. They haven't set up the heats yet, and I don't think they will until Saturday morning. But I don't expect a huck fest at this, so I don't think a 10 will win it. Depends on who's judging it though.