Ski and snowboard competition series return 

Gates, jumps, halfpipe, crosses and more

For all of the skiers and boarders out there who just don’t feel right on the slopes if they’re not wearing a bib over their jackets, Whistler-Blackcomb has a full slate of competitions on tap for winter and spring.

Nokia Snowboard FIS World Cup – Dec. 11 to 15

For the season’s first competition most of us are going to be on the sidelines, but we’re invited to cheer on our local snowboarders in World Cup snowcross, halfpipe, and parallel giant slalom events.

Kokanee Valley Race Series – Dec. 19 Season Opener

The popular Kokanee Valley Race Series has nine events on the calendar this year, starting with the first giant slalom on Whistler Mountain, Dec. 19. Skiers, snowboarders and telemarkers are welcome to come out and race some gates.

While this series does attract its share of retired and aspiring World Cup racers in the pro categories, there are age categories for everybody else. The emphasis is on fun and socializing.

The entry fee is $20 for each event, and you can register in advance at Guest Relations, or by calling 1-800-766-0449. On race days, you can register in the Rendezvous on Blackcomb or at Raven’s Nest on Whistler until 10 a.m.

Races start with first runs at 10:30 and second run is at 12:30. Super G’s, where competitors get just one run, start at 11 a.m.

After every race there is an awards ceremony at the Crab Shack featuring video playback of the race, draw prizes, and other race giveaways and specials.

Dec. 19 – GS on Whistler

Jan. 9 – GS on Blackcomb

Jan. 16 – GS on Whistler

Jan. 23 – Super G on Blackcomb*

Feb. 6 – Slalom on Whistler

Feb. 13 – Super G on Blackcomb*

Feb. 27 – GS on Blackcomb

Mar. 13 – GS on Blackcomb

Mar. 27 – Dual on Blackcomb

Canadian Freeskiing Championships / Big mountain Experience – Jan. 7 to 12

Back for a fifth year, the top freeskiers in the world will tackle some of the most dangerous slopes on Blackcomb Mountain, vying for the Canadian title and points for the International Free Skiers Association world championship series.

Last season, Whistler skiers Pierre-Yves Leblanc and two-time world champion Hugo Harrison were first and second in the men’s competition, while Jenn Aston and Aleisha Cline were first and third in the women’s.

The qualifiers are on Jan. 7 and 8, and the finals run on Jan. 9 or 10. Times and locations used will depend on weather and snow conditions, and will be announced just prior to the event.

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