Boarders out for RBC Riders opener

Thanks to a grant from Lotteries Yukon, Snowboard Yukon was using new high-tech timing devices for the first RBC Riders race of the season at Mt. Sima on Sunday.

No more stopwatches for Snowboard Yukon.

Thanks to a grant from Lotteries Yukon, Snowboard Yukon was using new high-tech timing devices for the first RBC Riders race of the season at Mt. Sima on Sunday.

“In the past, when I’ve designed and aligned the courses, we’ve done it line-of-sight, start to finish. So someone could time it from a single point,” said Norm Curzon, president of Snowboard Yukon. “Now that we’ve received this equipment through our lotteries grant, we’ve been able to provide electronic timing.

“The trail on Kyote (the site of the race) has a substantial dog-leg on it, but we were able to do a remote finish… That worked really well for us.”

Producing the fastest time of the 10-turn course was Tim Schirmer, the winner of the under-16 category in the Yukon Snowboard Championships the last two years. He also finished third at Sandor’s Icebreaker Rail Jam at Mt. Sima over the holidays.

Lara Bellon, who represented the Yukon at the Canada Winter Games a year ago in Halifax, had the second-fastest time alone in the open women’s category.

Curtis Perrier won the under-13 division while Ethan Davy took the win in 10-and-under.

“The really big standout was our 10-and-under Ethan Davy,” said Curzon. “It was our first time really seeing Ethan and for 10-year-old, he’s really well put together and rode really well today. You look at his time, he was in there.

“I’m excited to work with him – he’s 10! I can’t imagine what he’s going to be like when he’s 14 or 16. It’s exciting to see that kind of potential.”

Snowboard Yukon is currently looking at a productive season in terms of growth and training. With Whitehorse hosting the upcoming Arctic Winter Games, Mt. Sima’s halfpipe will be open for the first time since Whitehorse hosted the Canada Winter Games in 2007.

In addition to the halfpipe reopening, Sima’s terrain park was rebuilt during the summer. Snowboard Yukon is also working towards having a full-time snowboard-cross course installed at the ski resort.

“If the quality of Sima goes up, so does our ability to train athletes,” said Curzon. “That, to me, is the big thing this year.”

The next RBC Riders race will take place Jan. 22 and will be a joint event with the Arctic Winter Games trials taking place Jan. 21 and 22 at Mt. Sima.

Snowboard Yukon also plans to take the race series on the road. The association hopes to hold some RBC Riders races in Watson Lake and Dawson City this season. Dates have not been set.

“Watson Lake and we’re trying to get to Dawson as well,” said Curzon. “The nice thing about Watson Lake is they have night skiing so there’s the possibility we could have a weekday event, like on a Wednesday night.”

RESULTS

Ladies open

1st Lara Bellon – 33.8

Mens open

1st Tim Schirmer – 31.1

2nd Esa Suominen – 36.0

Men 13 and under

1st Curtis Perrier – 34.8

2nd Jarret Bernier – 36.4

Men 10 and under

1st Ethan Davy – 36.7

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com