Ski and snowboard cross are challenging enough with four athletes charging out of the gate at the same time contending for the same fast lane down a winding, technical course, but the 20 cm of new snow on the ground for the Atomic Ski and Snowboard Cross on Sunday morning added another element to the race.
Skiers and riders who strayed even a little off a strip of harder snow down the middle of the course found themselves bogged down in heavy snow, and then struggling to get back up to speed. The course also became more rutted with every bracket, and crashes and collisions were par for the course, albeit with soft landings.
In Ski Boys 13 and Under — the largest category with 29 racers — Logan Pehota won the time trial, and followed up by being the top racer, edging out Dmiti Djurick, Kyle Yates and Dalton Pehota in the final bracket.
In Ski Girls 13 and Under, Charley Field also placed first in the time trial and the brackets, finishing ahead of Aeron Westeinde, Sadie Gosney and Cheyenne Ling.
Only one snowboarder Under 13 turned up on the boys side, and no females.
In Ski Boys 14 to 16, Max Horner won both the time trials and the brackets, and was followed in the finals by Patrick Gibson, Nathan Hollier, and Zach Hertz.
For Ski Girls 14 to 16, Marielle Thompson led the way, followed by Nikki Wilmot and Bria Darlington.
In Snowboard Men 17 and Over, Derek Wintermans — fresh from a strong showing at the World Cup Finals in Italy where he won the time trial — placed first overall. He was followed by Jamie May, Jeff Drummond and Liam Walsh.
In Snowboard Women 17 and Over Bodil Leavih was first, followed by Wakana Hama, Katrina Weber and Mary Ann Graebling.
In Ski Men 17 and Over, Sven Winter edged out Nickolai Skriabin, Nozomi Nakashima and Dar Hicks.
The next local event open to skiers and snowboarders is the Telus Park Rider Sessions halfpipe on Sunday, April 6. Pre-registration is available at Guest Relations for $20, and day-of-race registration is $25 at the Rendezvous Lodge until 9:45 a.m. Helmets are mandatory.