Sunday, February 20, 2011

Wrangle The Chutes

Wrangle The Chutes at Kicking Horse, was my first big mountain competition and the most fun competition I have ever been in! Basically you rip down a big mountain line, hit a park jump then hold on to a bucking barrel while 4 other competitors pull the ropes to try and knock you off.

The sweetest thing about this trip is Rossignol (the main event sponsor) brought me and a bunch of other Rossignol athletes together, paid for our entry and put us up in a sick house! It was an amazing time.

Day 1: The jump was only open for like 45 minutes on the practice day due to an injury. So the organizers opened the jump up for practice before the high noon start time. It was a fun jump, but it had a dirt jump style landing. This is great for bikes, but you have to be a sniper to hit it on skis. I got 4 practice runs, including a straight air, 360, 540, and an attempted switch hit, in which I comically crashed and slid up the jump as I couldn't handle the bumpy in run switch.

When it came time for my run I dropped in lookers left of the left chute, hoping to hit a small drop into the chute then get on a spine for another 8-10 foot drop. As I came off the fist drop and tried to turn I immediately slid on rocks. I had managed to recover but just after missing the second drop. I then got on the spine between the two chutes, but got lost and took a smaller drop than I had wanted. I turned into the jump and did a mute 5 where upon the ride out (after the initial landing) my bindings suddenly blew off, it was weird, but I ran onto the horse and held on as long as I could. I finished day one in 43rd out of like 70, not bad considering and it was super fun.

Day 2: After having some issues in the morning, I got up to the start gate a little on the late side. It wasn't a big deal though, the organizers fit me in like 4 guys later. It was actually nice not having to wait around getting cold before my run.

For my line this day I pretty much took the same one, I just changed it a little bit. I dropped in from the same spot, but went straight a little longer before hitting a 6-8 foot drop into the chute. Once I landed I decided to just straight line the hell out of the rest of the chute. I got going so  fast, which was perfect because it set me up for this huge "McConky" turn to get onto the spine between two chutes. Once on the spine, all I was looking for were these two trees. One marking my drop in and one marking marking the take off on the cliffs I wanted to hit. I found them right away, and turned in. It was supposed to be a double stager and I wanted to throw a trick off the second cliff. But once I had dropped in I realized it was too tight to turn and I was going to have to send both cliffs in one shot. I popped super hard and knew I was going to make it over both. Just then I realized how big this was going to be and suddenly the landing was looking a little flat. The first cliff was about 5-6 feet high, followed by a landing of about 15-20 vertical feet followed by around a 15 foot cliff. Not to mention I had cleared over the second cliff with plenty of room to spare and alot of speed. This was definitely going to be the biggest drop I have ever done on skis and I didn't even realize it until I was in the air! Total drop was probably in the 40 to 50 foot range, and I stomped it! Next coming into the jump I was amped and thought I was going a little fast so I dropped more speed then I should have. My 7 tail turned into getting my ankles taken out at 630. But I crashed well got up and jumped on the bronco.

I must have kicked ass on my line, as my jump was a lot worse then the first day and I scored way higher. High enough to move me up to 30th, which I am more then pumped on for my first big mountain comp and the riding that happend in it.

Big thanks to Denis Leclaire, and Rossignol and a super huge thanks to Marie Allaire 

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