BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. -Dec. 13, 2001- In preparation for the first major snowboarding event in Colorado this season, the Breckenridge Ski Resort has begun work on its SuperPipe on Peak 8. And for the second consecutive year, the resort’s SuperPipe has been ranked the best in North America, this time by the readers of Transworld Snowboarding (last year’s award came from readers of Transworld Snowboard Life).

Officials say they are using their Super PipeDragon grooming implement throughout the weekend to put the final touches on the SuperPipe in preparations for the Mountain Dew Pro Nationals Vans Triple Crown of Snowboarding event Dec. 18-22.

Breckenridge’s Terrain Park, which along with the SuperPipe comprises the Peak 8 Freeway at the resort, opens Friday, Dec. 14. With the Terrain Park ranked fourth in North America by Transworld, the resort boasts of the best snowboarding facilities in Colorado by basis of the magazine’s rankings. The rankings were released as part of Transworld’s 2002 Snowboard Travel Guide park and pipe poll on newsstands now.

“This poll reflects the experience and expertise Breckenridge has gained from hosting major snowboard events and supporting the sport for a number of years,” noted Chris Searles, special events manager for the Breckenridge Ski Resort. According to Searles the resort has further enhanced its snowboarding facilities this season. He said the resort will feature eleven new rails to be rotated through the park during the season as well as expanded park terrain that will include -more-2-2-2″YEAR OF THE DRAGON” AT BRECKENRIDGE

additional features. As for maintenance, Breckenridge will have full-time staff members on hand every day; the resort will groom the Freeway every night, and “cut” the pipe every other day.

Breckenridge continues a tradition of world-class snowboard events started in 1985 with the world’s first Snowboarding World Championships when it hosts the $125,000 purse Vans Triple Crown of Snowboarding Dec. 18-22, 2001 for a fourth straight year. The event routinely attracts top U.S. competitors as well as those from over a dozen nations for its Big Air, SuperPipe and Slopestyle competitions, all slated for the Freeway Terrain Park at Peak 8. The Crown is sponsored by Vans, Southern California’s premier alternative sport and lifestyle company.

X Games Qualifier, Grand Prix Olympic Team-Qualifer Usher in 2002

Less than three weeks after Vans, many of the competitors are expected to return when the USSA-sanctioned Chevy Truck Grand Prix is held Jan. 9-13, 2002. The event includes prize money approaching $100,000, network television coverage and a special nighttime exhibition..Searles said competition is expected to be stiff given the Grand Prix is the final qualifying event for the U.S. Olympic halfpipe snowboard team: the team will be named in Breckenridge Jan. 13.

Breckenridge will also host the 2002 EXPN SuperPipe Qualifier Sat. Jan. 5. The freesking event represents skiers’ last opportunity to qualify for the U.S. Freeskiing Open Finals in Vail, Colo.

“The SuperPipe’s location at the base of Peak 8 makes it a great spectator venue, and the X Games qualifier is a great chance for skiers to have their turn to throw their best moves as well,,” noted Searles. He said the resort’s team riders in both snowboarding and skiing are expected to be crowd favorites, but said Summit County’s deep talent pool could see a darkhorse emerge.

For more information on Breckenridge Resort including a virtual tour of the park and pipe, visit the resort’s web site www.breckenridge.com