2012 Winter Dew Tour Snowbasin preview
Elias Ambühl, happy to be at Dew.
It's here, the Winter Dew Tour at Snowbasin! After a weeklong break after X Games 16, the boys and girls are back on the grind, ready to get down in Utah. This marks the third and final stop of the Winter Dew Tour for this season, and with some tight Dew Cup races on the line this weekend promises to be action-packed. But more on the races later.
Today held an open practice all day for both skiing and snowboarding, men and women. A recently sunny Utah turned grey today, with flurries coming in towards the end of the day.
The slopestyle course is one of the shortest courses that competitors will compete on all year and quite different than any other event. It features three rail options [see video] and two jumps, which makes Snowbasin the only course that contains more rails than jumps. How will this play into slope skiers' strageies? Time will tell, but current Dew Cup leader Tom Wallisch will certainly like it.
Russ Henshaw takes you on a ride, through the slopestyle course
However, no course is devoid of a little issue here or there, and Snowbasin was no different. The main issue is with the second (and last) jump's landing, with it being a bit too flat. Many hard impacts were witnessed today, but fortunately there is time for the park crew to make adjustments and get the ship righted. But as you can see from Russ' video above, the three rail options will prove tricky, with the two floaty jumps seeming more familiar to competitors.
Gus Kenworthy on the slopestyle setup
The Superpipe at Snowbasin has some bragging of its own to do, as it currently holds the record for the longest competition superpipe, at 615 feet. Whether this throws a wrench into peoples' runs is yet to be seen, but for some of the guys who go smaller, this could force some shake ups in trick selection.
But other than the length of the pipe, the cut is looking good (and it'll only get better). While many were keeping the big tricks in the bag today, tomorrow's preliminary rounds will surely heat up. With all the heavy hitters in attendance (minus a couple injured folks) it'll go off, no doubt.
Torin Yater-Wallace chats about the superpipe.
As stated earlier, this is the final stop of this year's Dew Tour, and the final standings are not a lock. On the slopetyle side, you've got Tom Wallisch with a decent lead, but he's certainly not in the clear. And on the pipe side of things, Kevin Rolland holds a tiny four-point margin on young Torin Yater-Wallace. And on the women's side, Kaya Turski (slope) and Maddie Bowman hold a 10-point margin on Devin Logan, who's in the race for two Dew Cups. Below are the current top five Dew standings.
About the author:
Shay Williams is the former Managing Editor of Freeskier Magazine. He now works full-time with Monster Energy, and continues to contribute to freeskier.com, offering insights re: the lives of his Monster athletes.