Morning Star Staff
Athletes aged 13 to 19 will tackle Silver Star Mountain Resort in the Canadian Junior Freestyle Skiing Championships.
Competition will be held in slopestyle, moguls and big air disciplines beginning Wednesday.
“These are the next generation Olympians trying to gain spots in the future on provincial and national teams,” said event spokesperson Ronda Barzilay.
The nationals begin with slopestyle, where athletes make their way down, through and over a course comprised of a variety of features including rails, jumps and other terrain park features.
Big air is an event that encourages athletes in all three Olympic freestyle disciplines to develop their acrobatic tricks and air sense.
Skiers go off a 45-foot jump doing single and double tricks, hitting the jump in a forward or switch position.
Pro skiers Noah Morrison, TJ Schiller, Joe Schuster, Josh Bibby and Justin Dorey – all former Vernon club members – got their starts in this event.
Single moguls is an Olympic discipline where skiers have to negotiate bumps and moguls while racing down a straight line as fast as they can.
Dual moguls is a World Championship event where skiers race head-to-head in knockout rounds.
Slopestyle is on at the Rockstar Training Park from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be followed by awards, and then an athlete’s parade Wednesday at 5 p.m. in the village centre.
Big air will be held Thursday in the lower Christmas Bowl from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m, followed by awards at 5:30 p.m.
Single moguls competition runs Friday, and dual moguls go Saturday, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. both days, down The Face. Awards Friday will be presented at 5:30 p.m. and at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
Vernon Freestyle Ski Club members competing in nationals on their home mountain include:
Big air: Patrick Dew, Max Fenn, Stirling Peters, Hayden Broderick, Elena Gaskell;
Slopestyle: Dew, Peters, Zachery Fenn, Gaskell;
Moguls: Jamie Rykuiter.
Sponsors for the Canadian Freestyle Skiing Championships include: Bannister GM – Vernon, Silver Star Mountain Resort, Kal Tire, Helmut’s Sausage Kitchen, Monashee Powder Snow Cats and Ken Gaskell, CIBC Wood Gundy.