The Extreme season continues in Crested Butte this week, beginning tomorrow, March 5, with the 9th Annual Subaru U.S. Extreme Boarderfest. The most talented riders in the world are coming to compete for $35,000 in cash prizes and the bragging rights to one of the most elite competitions of the year. The field of athletes, including X-Games competitors, juniors and local riders, will be challenged in 550 acres of extreme bowls, chutes, glades and steeps in the Big Mountain/Extreme event, along with a challenging Boardercross course and a Triple Air contest.
“The most consistent steep fall lines in all of Colorado exist here. The combination of this terrain, the venue and competitors are sure to combine for one hot event,” said pro snowboarder “Ox” Maloley. “This is where you come to test limits and have fun.” Erin Bloom, one of two Crested Butte Mountain sponsored female athletes, agrees. “I moved here, after working at many other resorts because if you want it, this is were you can become an extreme athlete, push the envelope and enjoy yourself.” Erin will be competing in all three disciplines at the Boarderfest. “Everybody?s going to go off,” she said. “The snow and terrain are inspiring and people get crazy when the conditions are this good.”
Competitor registration takes place today, March 4. Over one hundred athletes from all over the country, Canada and New Zealand have descended on Crested Butte this year, making it the largest, most diverse, field ever for the event. The Boardercross event kicks off the competition on Wednesday, March 5 th, starting with a qualifier at 11:00. This event pits four riders at a time on a race course that has many man-made terrain features. The first two boarders across the line advance to the next heat. The boardercross will be held on the newly designed Twister course. Four athletes will push out of the start gate and immediately hit a motocross style doubles section and air over a gap jump. They cruise through a speed section of four banked burms and over a tabletop jump and down into a second speed section. Finally, the riders will air over a large thirty to forty foot gap jump and pump down to the finish line.
This event begins right below the Ice Bar at the former Twister Warming House and is best viewed from Crested Butte?s Keystone Lift and by skiing or riding alongside the course. Beginner terrain surrounds the event finish so skiers and riders of all abilities are able to watch and cheer on the competitors.
The Triple Air competition is set for Thursday, March 6, in the Teocalli terrain park off Bushwhacker Run. Competitors will fly off three jumps designed by local pro rider Jason Pogoloff.
The event culminates Friday and Saturday, March 7 and 8 with the Big Mountain/Extreme competition. In this event, riders are left to defend themselves against some of the steepest terrain in Colorado. The field will be cut in half on day one finishing with two runs, weather permitting, on Saturday, March 8th. An overall male and female champion will be chosen from those that have the highest cumulative score in all three disciplines. Club Med trips will be the grand prize for these two lucky competitors. Over $35,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded throughout the week.