The Ford Ranger North American Championships, the final leg of the Vans Triple Crown of Snowboarding completed its second day of action today as riders took to the giant Big Air jump for the Men’s semi-finals and Women’s qualifying. In addition, qualifying for the Women’s Superpipe competition took place this morning on Sierra at Tahoe’s monster Superpipe. With spring-like snow conditions, the Ford Ranger North American Championships are providing the ideal conclusion to the 2001 Vans Triple Crown of Snowboarding.

In today’s Men’s Big Air semi-finals each competitor was given two runs, the best of which counted as his qualifying score, Rahm Klampert was able to improve on his second-place qualification to finish in first place this afternoon with a run of 27.0. Yesterday’s first place qualifier Jessie Burtner was just .6 points behind Klampert and Steven Simmons recorded a best run of 25.40, good enough to finish in third. Louie Fountain and Josh Smith rounded out the top-five.

In the Women’s Division, Pauline Richon dominated Big Air qualifying landing a crowd pleasing “Barrel Roll” for a score of 26.2. This was nearly one full point ahead of second place Jenna Murano who recorded a best jump of 25.4, while Jamie Macleod scored a 24.0 on her best jump to finish in third place. Shannon Dunn and Ali Bernstein finished fourth and fifth respectively.

SUPERPIPE FINALS PREVIEW

Women’s Superpipe qualifying took place today with Doriane Vidal finishing at the top of the leader board with a best run of 23.7. Fabienne Reuteler finished in second with a score of 23.0, with Michele Taggart finishing in third after scoring 21.7 on her best run. Nevin Schwartz and Catherine Nieves will look to improve on their respective fourth and fifth place scores in tomorrow’s finals in hopes of clinching the $7,500 winner’s check.

In the Men’s Division, it’s anyone’s guess who will emerge with the final Superpipe title of the 2001 Vans Triple Crown Series. With marquee names such as 1998 Gold Medal Winner at the Nagano Olympics, Gian Simmen, J.J. Thomas and Daniel Franck headlining tomorrow’s Superpipe Final, there’s sure to be plenty of action before the winner collects his $10,000 check.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Saturday, March 31
* Superpipe
8:00 a.m. ¿ 8:45 a.m. ¿ Men’s Warm-up
9:00 a.m. ¿ 10:50 a.m. ¿ Men’s Qualifying
11:30 a.m.¿ 12:30 p.m. ¿ Women’s Finals
12:30 p.m. ¿ 2:00 p.m. ¿ Men’s Finals
2:15 p.m.¿ Motorola/ISF Final Superpipe Award

Sunday, April 1
* Big Air
10:00 a.m. ¿ 11:00 a.m. ¿ Warm-up
11:00 a.m. ¿ 11:30 a.m. ¿ Women’s Finals
12:00 p.m. ¿ 1:00 p.m. ¿ Men’s Finals
1:30 p.m. ¿ Vans Final Awards