Rail Session draws a crowd, Stompeders wrestle with snow 

10,000 show up for rail jam in Skiers' Plaza

Judges scored every spin, grind and press at rail jam. Photo by Andrew Mitchell
  • Judges scored every spin, grind and press at rail jam. Photo by Andrew Mitchell

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With the Rail Session and Stompede to her credit, Turski is now three for three this season – first in the Vermont Open slopestyle, first in the McDonald’s Rail Session, and first in the TWSSF Stompede.

There was a total of $10,000 in prize money up for grabs.


For an inaugural event the Stompede went surprisingly well, with huge crowds of spectators ignoring cold, high winds and the lure of powder to watch some of the biggest names in skiing and snowboarding face off on a short slopestyle course near the top of the Emerald Chair. There was one day of training and a day of qualifiers leading up to Sunday’s final event, which featured 25 skiers and 25 snowboarders.

The snow did throw a wrench into the mix, making it difficult for skiers and riders to get enough speed to attempt some of the harder features, including the A-Frame off the top air and the box suspended 18 feet over crash pads that separated two quarterpipes at the bottom.

The skiers went first. California’s Michelle Parker posted the best first run of the women’s contest, opting for a high-speed grind over the box to drop rather than the spine, but Kaya Turski of Squamish had a big second run to finish first overall. Third place belonged to Denise Jaworsky.

For Turski, going two for two at the TWSSF events was as good as it gets.

"It’s been a really good weekend, the rail jam was really sick and I really liked the setup, and the qualifier and the finals for the stompede were just awesome," she said.

Mike Henitiuk of Calgary also came from behind in the men’s contest with a strong second run to finish first overall, followed by Riley Leboe of Vernon and Taylor Felton of Maine.

Whistler’s Charley Ager just missed the podium by one point.

Special recognition was also given to Scott Hibbert, who had trouble delivering a full run but was the only competitor to land a full 1080 off the top air, and also had one of the best jibs off the A-frame.

Top qualifier Candid Thovex of France was expected to win, but crashed on his first spinning A-frame trick. His second run was better, but another tough switch landing off the A-frame slowed him up at the bottom, where he did a 180 gap between quarterpipes before getting tangled up.

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