Words by Cara Williams

Photos by Amy Jimmerson

The second stop of The North Face Park and Pipe Open Series concluded this weekend under sunny skies at Northstar, California. Twenty thousand dollars in prize money was awarded to the top finishers, with James Campbell of Sugarloaf, Maine, and Yuki Tsubota of Whistler Blackcomb, Canada taking top honors in the park competition, while topping the podium in the pipe event was Kyle Smaine of Heavenly, California, and Cassandra Sharpe of Whistler Blackcomb, BC.  


Qualifiers for the men's park competition took place on Friday, with 53 male athletes trying to advance to the semi-finals in a best-of two run format. Then on Saturday, with partly cloudy spring-like conditions, 22 male and 11 female competitors battled it out in the park semi-finals and finals.

Taking top honors for the men was James Campbell, who delivered a near flawless run top to bottom, consisting of technical combos on the rail section, and then linked two back-to-back double corks, a switch left side double rodeo 900 and a left double cork 1080 high mute grab, which earned him a score of 89.00. Rounding out the men's podium in second place was Spencer Milbocker of Bittersweet, Michigan, who scored an 86.20, and Cody Cirillo of Breckenridge, Colorado, who placed third with an 85.00.

Spencer Milbocker


"James perfectly executed the hardest run of the day, hands down. He was solid on both rails, had spins both ways and back-to-back doubles," stated head judge and AFP General Manager, Steele Spence.


Spencer Milbocker (2nd), James Campbell (1st), Cody Cirillo (3rd)

Men's Park Finals Results

1) James Campbell - 89

2) Spencer Milbocker - 86.2

3) Cody Cirillo - 85

4) Erik Hughes - 83.6

5) Joe Schuster - 80.8

6) Kolby Ward - 78.8

7) Kyle Smaine - 71.8

8) Ryan Wyble - 67.2

9) Jason Arens - 64.6

10) Conner Bennett - 60.8

11) Alex Gorham - 51.6

12) Carson LeHouillier - 26.4

In the women's park competition, The North Face athlete Yuki Tsubota dominated the field with her technical and smooth skiing. Yuki slid both rail features and then was the only female to successfully land a left side cork 720, scoring an 87.20 for her efforts. In second place was Catherine Warchal of Camelback, Pennsylvania, who stomped a crowd pleasing double front flip and received a score of 80.80. Rounding out the women's podium in third was Taylor Lundquist of Park City, Utah, who received an 85.00.

Yuki Tsubota

Catherine Warchal (2nd), Yuki Tsubota (1st), Taylor Lundquist (3rd)

Women's Park Finals Results

1) Yuki Tsubota - 87.2

2) Catherine Warchal - 80.8

3) Taylor Lundquist - 79.4

4) Rebecca Roberts - 74.4

5) Michelle Parker - 72

6) Brooke Potter - 71.2

7) Maggie Stout - 66

8) Ashleigh Low - 59.2

9) Shanny Cohen - 37.2

10) Cassandra Sharpe - 29.8

11) Kristen McCormack - 24

Semi-finals and finals for the men's and women's pipe competition took place on Sunday in Northstar's Olympic caliber, 22-foot tall, 510-foot long superpipe, under perfect, sunny and blue sky conditions.


Taking top honors for the men was Kyle Smaine with an outstanding run that consisted of a double flair and left and right side spins boosting with amplitude that left the judges on the edge of their seats. Smaine's winning run scored a 92.60. In second place was the technical freeskiing master, Patrick Baskins of Vail, Colorado, who scored an 89.80 with his smooth switch left and right side spins and a flawless left side 1260 to end his run. Rounding out the podium in third place was the previous day's park champion James Campbell, who scored an 84.00.

Kyle Smaine

"The men's pipe finals today were legitimate by anyone's standards. First place finisher Kyle Smaine displayed he was a force to be reckoned with, with his amplitude, matching of pipe transitions, and perfect technical execution," stated head judge and AFP General Manager, Steele Spence.

Patrick Baskins (2nd), Kyle Smaine (1st), James Campbell (3rd)

Men's Pipe Finals Results

1) Kyler Smaine - 92.6

2) Patrick Baskins - 89.8

3) James Campbell - 84

4) Marshall LaCroix - 82.8

5) Garrett Northey - 81.8

6) Kris Atkinson - 78.2

7) Colby Stevenson - 78

8) Carson LeHouillier - 75.8

9) Brendan MacKay - 71.2

10) Sean Collin - 65

11) Colter Brehmer - 55.6

12) Collin Jefferies - 38


On the women's side of the pipe competition, Cassandra Sharpe positioned herself on the top of the podium with a run that consisted of a smooth right side flair, the only invert attempted and landed by a female in the event, scoring herself a 77.00. Maggie Stout of Blue Mountain, Ontario finished in second place with her very technical spins in both directions and consistent amplitude, scoring herself a 73.00. In third place was Abigale Hansen from Mammoth, California, who earned a 69.60.

Cassandra Sharpe

"I was impressed with the up-coming talent in the women's field. I look forward to seeing the ladies take their runs to the next level of halfpipe skiing. Cassandra Sharpe showed she was not afraid to put it all on the line for the competition with her amplitude and inverted airs," said judge and freeskiing legend, Skogen Sprang.  

Maggie Stout (2nd), Cassandra Sharpe (1st), Abigale Hansen (3rd)

Women's Pipe Finals Results

1) Cassandra Sharpe - 77

2) Maggie Stout - 73

3) Abigale Hansen - 69.6

4) Zyre Austin - 64.2

5) Charity Mersereau - 60.2

6) Shannon Gunning - 54.4

7) Stephanie Lawee - 53.4

8) Katie Souza - 41.4

All weekend long the competitions started with a fore-run by 11-year-old Aspen Spora, who was fresh from fore-running Winter X Games 16 in Aspen, Colorado. He displayed to all the competitors in the event the youthful talent emerging from the next generation of freeskiers.

2012 Northstar Halfpipe Men's Top 3 Runs from The North Face Park + Pipe Open on Vimeo.

2012 Northstar Halfpipe Women's Top 3 from The North Face Park + Pipe Open on Vimeo.

The North Face Park and Pipe Open Series will conclude with the third and final stop in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire on March 8-11, 2012, and you can win free entry into the event right here on Newschoolers by clicking here. For more information on The North Face Park and Pipe Open Series, check out http://www.thenorthfaceppos.com, and to see how this event affects the AFP rankings, go to afpworldtour.com.