Rain and heavy snow couldn't keep the hardcore skiers and riders away on Sunday for the opening event of the Park Rider Sessions Presented by Telus. The event in question was a Rail Jam, taking place in the Whistler Terrain Park.
The conditions kept the numbers down, but there was a good turnout in all the usual categories.
In Male Snowboard 17 and Over, Ryoki Ogawa placed first, followed by Benjamin Poechman in second and Dan Ato in third.
Natalie Good won the Female Snowboard 17 and Over competition, followed by Yuka Kasukawa and Eiko Matsui.
In Male Ski 17 and Over, Robin Du Pasquier placed first, followed by Jordan Innes and Steven Hager. In Ski Boys 14 to 17 it was Brendan Kelly on top, followed by Taylor Wilson and Michael Granger. Mitchell Wilson competed alone in the Ski Boys 13 and Under category.
The next event is a New Year's Eve Slopestyle, taking place Dec. 31 on Blackcomb. Early registration is $29 at Whistler Blackcomb Guest Relations, going up to $35 on the day of the event. Event day registration is available until 9:45 a.m. in the Rendezvous Lodge.
Biathlon programs getting underway
The Callaghan Winter Sports Club is hosting a series of biathlon events and programs this winter, starting this weekend with the B.C. Cup Biathlon and Junior Trials. The competitions run from Dec. 17 to 21, with athletes attending the Junior Trials from across Canada and the U.S. in order to qualify for the World Junior Championships.
The event is free for spectators, and gets underway with training on Friday. The sprint competition gets underway at 11 a.m. on Saturday and the pursuit races at 9 a.m. on Sunday, with age categories following.
There is more racing on Monday, with the Mass Start trials getting underway at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, followed by the age categories at 10 a.m.
Four Squamish athletes from the West Coast Nordic Club will compete in the trials competition, including Hollie Sones, Holden Jones, Cedric St. Pierre Borchert and Hunter Sones.
A complete schedule is available online at www.callaghanwintersportsclub.com.
In addition to the events, the CWSC is supporting biathlon development programs for all ages.
The Biathlon Bears youth program is hosting eight sessions from Jan. 9 to Feb. 27 for kids aged 8 to 13, beginner to advanced. The price is $175, with two-hour sessions from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Sundays.
The sessions are skate only.
Duncan Munro, who organized biathlon mountain bike races for kids taking part in the WORCA Dirt Camps this summer, will be helping to coach some of the sessions and is inviting local riders to try the sport.