Toronto, ON Ė††The Canadian Shield made its third tour stop this past weekend at Calgaryís Canadian Olympic Park (COP).† The local ski and snowboard community along with athletes that have followed the tour across the country clearly demonstrated their eagerness for the third tour stop by nearly maxing out registration well before the Canadian Shield crew rolled into town.
Despite an exceptionally well-constructed course and over 100 snowboarders prepared to ride, the weather forecast did not bode well for Saturdayís scheduled snowboard contest. Calling for up-hill winds between 40-60km/hr in the afternoon. Organizers made the decision to postpone the pro and amateur snowboard contest to Sunday morning, a choice that was well received by competitors.
Bright and early Sunday morning the snowboard divisions took to the hill and began their contest just before 10am.† With a best of three runs format, Craig Gouweloos took full advantage of the course and rode his way into first place in the menís pro division. His best run included a switch Backside 5, Backside 9, Cab 9 and a 50-50 Frontside 3 into the bank to a Front blunt 270.† In addition to his first ever podium finish on the Canadian Shield Tour, Craig took home $5000 and the†Snowboard Canada Magazine Standout Trick award for his Backside 9. Making the trek to Calgary from Whistler proved fruitful for Ryan Manning who captured second place with his run that consisted of a Backside Rodeo to Frontside 9, Frontside 7 and a 5-0 to switch Front Lip.†Rounding out the pro menís podium was Michael Rotsaert who took third place with his extremely clean jump line made up of a switch Backside 5, corked Backside 7 Indy and a Frontside 7 Lien.
Jenna Blasman once again dominated the pro womenís division and easily captured her second win on the 2012 Canadian Shield Tour.† In addition to her first place finish she once again walked away with the†sbcwomen.com Standout Trick award for a Backside 3.† Natalie Allport rode her way into second place, landing on her first ever Canadian Shield podium.† While Revelstokeís Sabrina Gauthier took third place.
The amateur menís division was the largest snowboard field of the day, made up of 31 competitors.† Locals dominated the division as Morgan Buchner from Redwood Meadows took first place; Kade Philps and Austin Kirk both from Calgary took second and third place respectively. The amateur womenís division was the largest the tour has seen to date and saw several strong performances, including that of Calgary local Amanda Coyle who managed to capture first.
The Disney XD divisions were able to utilize Saturday morning for their contest before the strong winds moved in.† Both the boys and girls categories had large showings of fans that came out to cheer them on from the Disney XD Ultimate Lounge, which was packed with people all morning.† In one of the tours largest Disney XD X-Elerator + Boys categories Liam LaFrance of Calgary was able to ride his way into first place out of a field of 25 competitors.† Another Calgary local, Carter Jarvis, took the Disney XD X-Elerator 12 & under win.
Sunday afternoon was dedicated exclusively to the skiers, who had a near capacity field of upwards of 115 competitors.† The pro men and womenís divisions rode last on the day and despite their timing and the slightly worked in course managed to throw down and impress the judges throughout the three run contest.† By days end Mack Jones managed to secure the pro menís win and $5000 with a run made up of aleft 900, switch 1080, switch 7 and switch 270 on 270 off the rail feature. Joining Mack on the podium in second place was Ian Cosco, who to date has managed to podium at all three tour stops.† Ianís run consisted of a right 7, Double Flat, cab 9 to 270 on 270 off the rail, which was followed by a mad dash to the airport to catch a flight. †Ian is also currently in the tour point lead heading into the final stop at Blue Mountain, March 22-24. Rounding out the top three was Nevin Metzger, who captured his first tour podium with a strong jump line that included a left cab 7, cab 9 to right 9.† Narrowly missing the podium but still walking away with some recognition was Rob Heule, who was awarded the†SBC SKIER Standout Trick award for his 450 Butter on the down rail.
Yuki Tsubota claimed her third pro womenís division tour win at COP.† Yuki is now comfortably in the tour point lead heading into the fourth and final stop.† Joining her on the podium in second was Maggie Voisin who made the 6-hour trek from Whitefish, Montana to compete. And Cassandra Ratcliffe of Whistler, BC took third place.† Meagan Fiselier just missed the podium placing in fourth overall but still took home the†sbcwomen.com Standout Trickaward for her corked 7.
The K2 Skis amateur menís division was the largest competitor field at the COP tour stop with over 40 skiers registered to compete. †After all 120+ runs were completely Brendan MacKay of Calgary took first place. On the womenís front the K2 Skis amateur open division was lead by Karly Sansom, who claimed first place well ahead of her fellow competitors.
The Disney XD X-Elerator 12 and under divisions for both boys and girls had a strong turnout.† Not only did they enjoy the day and the chance to compete with their friends they demonstrated the true meaning of sportsmanship and comradery as they encourage and cheered for each other throughout the contest. At the end of their morning competition 9 year-old Sofia Tchernetsky of Calgary and 11 year-old Stirling Peters from Vernon, BC placed first in the Disney XD X-Elerator boys and girls categories.
The fourth and final stop of The Canadian Shield Ski and Snowboard Slopestyle Tour is set for March 22-24 at Blue Mountain, ON.† For all the details head over to†thecanadianshield.ca