Whistler, CANADA, December 10, 1999 – Whistler/Blackcomb, Sims Sports Inc. (SIMS) and Resort Communications Group (RCG) announced today an agreement to host the Sims Invitational World Snowboarding Championship (WSC) at Whistler Resort, April 20-23, 2000. The four-discipline, internationally televised event will invite the best riders in the world to compete for $200,000US in prize money over three days. The WSC will take centre stage at Whistler’s legendary Telus World Ski & Snowboard Festival (WSSF), North America’s largest annual winter sports event. The WSC will be hosted by Whistler/Blackcomb and managed in partnership by SIMS and RCG.
SIMS held the first World Snowboarding Championship in 1982 in Lake Tahoe when Tom Sims brought together the world’s top riders to compete for snowboarding’s most prestigious crown. Now 18 years later, the WSC will re-emerge as one of the largest professional events of its kind in the world with the largest prize purse of any single event in North America.
SIMS Chairman and CEO John Textor says, “Since Tom Sims built his first snowboard in 1963, SIMS has been totally focussed on the rider experience. The World Snowboarding Championship will extend this commitment by giving the top pros what they expect out of a world class event…a long transition halfpipe built by the Super Dragon, an intensely kinetic big air event, a SIMS-design slopestyle course and a giant slalom course that only Whistler/Blackcomb could deliver.”
The backdrop to the WSC is the fifth annual Telus World Ski & Snowboard Festival, April 14-23, featuring over 50 live bands and 3000 athletes competing in 28 events. The WSSF was the driving force behind making Whistler the busiest mountain resort in the world in April 1999, recording more than 240,000 resort visits over ten days.
Says WSSF Chairman and RCG Managing Director Doug Perry, “The addition of the World Snowboarding Championship significantly bolsters our efforts toward building the premier snowsport festival in the world. In SIMS we have found a partner that shares our vision for building innovative events of the highest professional standards.”
David Perry, Whistler/Blackcomb’s Vice President Marketing & Sales agrees, “Whistler has become a mecca for snowboarding each April. This landmark commitment to annually host the Sims Invitational World Snowboarding Championship takes this trend to an exciting new level.”