Melvin McNutt rides again at Yukon championship

One year after announcing his retirement from competition, Whitehorse snowboarder Max Melvin-McNutt decided to strap on his board for a friendly contest.

One year after announcing his retirement from competition, Whitehorse snowboarder Max Melvin-McNutt decided to strap on his board for a friendly contest.

It just so happens the contest was the Yukon Snowboard Championships, hosted by Snowboard Yukon at Mount Sima, March 18 and 19.

“It’s not super competitive or anything, it’s more of just a fun thing to do,” said Melvin-McNutt. “I didn’t train all winter for it, I just did it out of the blue, and it as pretty laid back as far as snowboard contests go.”

Melvin-McNutt became the first Yukoner to make the B.C. provincial team in 2011 and then the national development team in 2014. He retired following a string of injuries sustained during World Cup competitions during the 2014/15 season.

It would seem he’s still got it. The 22-year-old took first place in the open male division at the slopestyle championship on Saturday. He won the same division in 2010, the last time he competed at the championship.

Melvin-McNutt dethroned two-time defending champ Tim Schirmer with a backside blunt-slide 720 out and a 50/50 frontside 360 out on the rails. He then threw down a switch underflip on one jump and a backside 720 on the jumps.

“My body is feeling good … but I didn’t do anything super crazy,” said Melvin-McNutt.

“I’m a snowboard coach now, so it was just good to be out there riding with my athletes,” he added.

A pair of first-time competitors had success at the championships at Sima.

Dawson City’s Jamie Thomas placed first in the open female division with a boardslide and 50/50 on the rails, and indy grabs on the jumps.

“I really liked it, it was a lot of fun,” said the 16-year-old. “I liked all the people I was riding with and it was just fun. It didn’t feel too competitive.”

Thomas is finishing her first season riding with the Snowboard Yukon competitive team.

“I really like all my coaches, they were a lot of help,” said Thomas. “Esa (Suominen) did the slopestyle with me and he really helped me out.”

Thomas isn’t the only boarder meeting success thanks to Snowboard Yukon programs.

Whitehorse’s Josiah Walker, who is a member of the Sandor’s Shredders development program, was the only rider to win gold both days.

He won gold U10 slopestyle on Saturday and first in the U10 snowboardcross on Sunday.

“I am happy about getting gold twice,” said Walker. “I enjoyed it a lot. It was my first time competing, so getting first surprised me.”

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com

Results:

Slopestyle

U9 male

1st Connor Boland

2nd Eli Marsh

3rd Michaias Walker

4th Declan Laliberte

U10 male

1st Josiah Walker

2nd Ben McPherson

3rd Beau Yurchak-Lovelace

U11 male

1st Lewis Bunce

2nd Daniel Pike

3rd Kieran Mooney

U12 male

1st Jacob Nickel

Males 13-14

1st Ben Machtans

2nd Syth Charchun

3rd Zander Leslie

Males 15-16

1st Sammy Mather

2nd Asher Brault

3rd Ethan Davy

Open female

1st Jamie Thomas

2nd Teagan Wiebe

Open male

1st Max Melvin-McNutt

2nd Tim Schirmer

3rd Braeden Dolan

4th Mike Richardson

5th Brett Nichol

Snowboardcross

U10 male

1st Josiah Walker

2nd Connor Boland

3rd Eli Marsh

4th Ben McPherson

5th Michaias Walker

Males 11-12

1st Daniel Pike

2nd Kieran Mooney

Males 13-16

1st Asher Brault

2nd Syth Charchun

Open male

1st Tim Schirmer

2nd Ethan Davy

3rd Sammy Mather

4th Robert Faulds

Masters (over-35 male)

1st Matt Johnson

2nd Norm Curzon

3rd Sean Mather

4th David Yule

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