Showing total disregard for self-preservation, contenders at this years Jackson Hole Banked Slalom sped through the 1000 vertical foot long leg-burner of a course, They were heading full-bore at high angle gates, step-ups, a tabletop kicker over Sunnyside Traverse to finished up at quite possibly the most difficult turn in the history of banked slaloming- the Terje Kicker.
The course started with choppy banked turns in Lower Headwall Gully, into high-speed groomed turns through Dude’s Ditch. Spinouts, compressions and full-on blowouts were commonplace in the last stretch of Dicks Ditch, which featured high gates in a gully reminiscent of early Mt Hood taco-style gravitron superpipes.
The weather provided a combination of course softening snow and sun throughout the two-day competition. In the end a relieved Lance Pittman took first place with a time of 1:35.45. After weeks of pre-competition claiming and spraying the first place finisher was stoked that he lived up to his predictions of Illuminati glory. Kevin Blogys took second with 1:36.27 and Rob Duncan took third clocking in at 1:37.29.
Victoria Jealouse dropped in for her inaugural competition of the year placing first with a smoking time of 1:39.75, which incidentally would have placed her in men’s sixth place behind Mike Basich. Dang. Jackson Hole Snowboard Team’s fifteen-year old prodigy Emma Rahme placed second with a time of 1:41.27 and Atomic rider Jamie Sundberg took third with 1:41.77.
The majority of this years top finishers were all seen the night before at the Snake River Brewery which might make one wonder if there isn’t a little something extra in those hops. As the awards ceremony finished up, the skies over the Tetons opened up and just started puking snow. Now is a good time to be in Jackson. For complete results look it up on jacksonhole.com