The Masters Group and the Canadian Snowboard Federation have hammered out a new agreement that will keep FIS World Cup snowboard events in Whistler for the next five years. And because the World Cup downhill ski race is unlikely to return to Whistler next December, plans for the snowboard events Dec. 9-12, 1999 have been changed. The super G has been dropped from the snowboard schedule and replaced with a giant slalom. All events — GS, snowboard cross and halfpipe — will be held on Blackcomb this year. "We won’t be doing the super G because Whistler’s lost the downhill," said Mark Taylor of the Masters Group. The last three years the safety systems installed for the men’s World Cup downhill ski race on Whistler Mountain’s Dave Murray course have been used by the snowboarders, who hold a super G on the lower part of the same run. But with the downhill being cancelled each of the last three years the FIS isn’t expected to give Whistler another chance to hold the ski race in December. The World Cup ski races (downhill and super G) and the World Cup snowboard events have been the cornerstones of the December WinterStart Festival. If Whistler isn’t included on the World Cup ski race calendar for next December the World Cup freestyle events could be moved from their traditional January dates to December and included in the festival. The FIS is expected to make a final decision on December ski races at their meeting in May. Meanwhile, Taylor said moving all the snowboard events to Blackcomb will make it easier for television to cover the three events. "The GS will be on Gandy Dancer (now renamed Ross’ Gold) and the boardercross will be parallel with it. The snowboard park will be used for the halfpipe," Taylor said. There is snowmaking on all three of the slopes and a building nearby which can be used as an on-mountain broadcast centre for all three events. Unlike World Cup alpine events, snowboard World Cup events are not required to be broadcast live. The tape delayed broadcasts give event organizers more flexibility in scheduling. Taylor said an exhibition quarterpipe event may also be part of the four days of snowboarding. The original three-year agreement between the CSF and the Masters Group expired following last December’s successful World Cup events at Whistler. The new agreement which should keep World Cup snowboarding events in Whistler for the next five years is still subject to FIS approval, but Taylor doesn’t anticipate that will be an issue.