On February 17-19, 2000, the best snowboarders in the world will descend on Mountain High Resort with their hearts on fire and their eyes on the $40,000 prize purse being offered by the Swatch Boardercross World Tour event. “This event means a tremendous amount to Mountain High,” says Karl Kapuscinski, general manager. “It adds credibility to the resort and opens our doors to todayà'¹s greatest riders.”
The Swatch Boardercross World Tour, now in its fourth season, is the worldà'¹s number-one ranked professional Boardercross tour. It will hold events in Austria, France, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Colorado, and now Wrightwood, California.
The Swatch event was officially signed on October 29, 1999, by Peak Productions President Erik Kalacis and Mountain Highà'¹s Kapuscinski.
After much deliberation, the 1.6-mile Gold Rush trail at Mountain Highà'¹s East Resort was selected as the optimum location for the event. With its high-speed lift access and open finish, Gold Rush is the perfect venue for both competitors and spectators alike.
“The terrain is ideally suited for the course as well,” states Keith Pfahler, seasoned Boardercross designer and Mountain Highà'¹s terrain builder. Pfahler, who has been involved with the Swatch events since its inception, has designed courses throughout the world including Japan, Canada, and the United States. He brings with him an enormous amount of expertise and familiarity with the Swatch program. Despite the resortà'¹s obvious locational benefits, Keith is a major reason the Swatch Boardercross World Tour landed at Mountain High.
The event begins Thursday, February 17, with course training down Gold Rush and registration parties at the mountainà'¹s Bullwheel Saloon. Friday follows with time trials, more training, and preparation for the main event.
In Swatch Boardercross races, six riders per heat battle down a twisting and turning course filled with jumps, spines, rollers, and much more. Modeled after MotoCross, ità'¹s arguably snowboardingà'¹s most exciting event.
At the finish line, the top-three advance while the rest move into the loserà'¹s round and closer to double elimination. The February 19 event will be televised for international as well as U.S. and Canadian broadcasts on a 60-minute program. In addition to the race, the coverage will focus on the resortà'¹s consumer festival and rider parties.
Throughout the day, guests will be able to tour the many displays and vendor booths or join the scene on the sundeck with live music and celebrity radio remotes.