The snowguns have been hard at work all week, and conditions should be good on Saturday night, Dec. 27, for the first King of the Rails rail jam at the base of Blackcomb.
Up to 100 skiers and snowboarders are expected to take part, hitting one of two rail lines under the lights in a jam session that lasts an hour and a half. The athletes themselves judge the winners, who will win a share of the entry fees based on the number of entries in each category.
As well, all participants are eligible to win draw prizes from sponsors at Showcase, Glacier Shop, Atomic, Nintendo, Telus, DNA and others.
Registration is from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Whistler Kids for $15. The rail jam runs from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. before heading inside for prizes and refreshments.
Helmets are mandatory, and other forms of protection recommended. Kids under the age of 18 will need a waiver signed by a parent or guardian.
The next event in the series is on Jan. 10.
Test of Metal registration draws near
With all 200 locals registration spots being snapped up in just over two hours earlier in December, that leaves 800 spots for everyone else in the 2009 Test of Metal. Registration gets underway at 6 p.m. on Jan. 1 with an online free-for-all that could be over in two hours or less.
Some ways to improve your chances include finding a good high speed connection, and working with other riders to get through. Everyone can register up to four names for the race, so you might want to coordinate with other riders by telephone.
The slightly harder route to get into the race is to turn pro, as the pro elite riders can register pretty much until race day.
There is no waitlist again this year, and no refunds for people who drop off the list. The new system was created to make things easier for organizers, who had to balance a long waitlist with a long list of registered riders to fill the gates. Now, if someone drops out they are not replaced.
Registration is at www.testofmetal.com.
The race is 67 km long, and includes over 1,200 metres of climbing and 35 km of singletrack trails. The race day is June 20, 2009.
This year the race will also be part of a Test of Metal Series, along with the Brakendale based OreCrusher and July’s GearJammer.