OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE – Newry, ME – At its annual Congress held late last month in Cape Town, South Africa, the International Ski Federation (FIS) determined that Maine’s Sunday River ski resort will again host a World Cup snowboarding stop in 2009.
The Sunday River stop on the worldwide circuit, scheduled for February 27 – March 1, 2009, will be the sole U.S. World Cup stop for snowboardcross and parallel giant slalom. The resort last hosted a World Cup event on the FIS Freestyle skiing circuit in 2001, although Sunday River has since hosted elite skiing and snowboarding events including the U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix.
“We’re looking forward to welcoming the best snowboarders in the world," said Jim Costello, director of marketing for Sunday River and Sugarloaf. “These are fantastic spectator events. Thanks to Seth Wescott (of Carrabassett Valley, Me.), Maine knows just how exciting snowboardcross can be."
The world’s best snowboardcross athletes are expected to compete including Maine’s Olympic SBX gold medalist Wescott, Olympic silver medalist Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton Mountain, Vt.), three-time X Games champion Nate Holland (Squaw Valley, Calif.) and snowboarding legend Shaun Palmer (South Lake Tahoe, Calif.), to name just a few.
Snowboardcross, which never fails to amp up the crowd with its competitive intensity, has four riders at a time tackling the varying terrain of turns and jumps. The snowboarding discipline debuted at the 2006 Olympics.
Parallel giant slalom also will heat things up as racers go head-to-head until a winner is determined. Massachusetts native Tyler Jewell (Steamboat Springs, Colo.), who had two World Cup podiums last season including a second place finish at the World Cup in Lake Placid, N.Y., will look to have success in front of a U.S. crowd again.
Olympic bronze medalist Chris Klug (Aspen, Colo.), Olympian Michelle Gorgone (Boston, Mass.) and World Cup performers Adam Smith (Bend, Ore.) and Justin Reiter (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) also are expected.
“The competitions will be intense and with the finish arena in the base-area for both events, spectators will easily see the sports up close. It will be a fun and exciting weekend for all,” added Clark.
The Visa U.S. Snowboarding Cup Schedule at Sunday River is as follows:
* Friday, Feb. 27, 2009 – official training and SBX qualifying
* Saturday, Feb. 28, 2009 – SBX finals
* Sunday, March 1, 2009 – PGS qualifying and finals
NBC and the cable station Versus will broadcast the Visa U.S. Snowboarding Cup in the United States. Television dates and times will be announced closer to the season. WCSN.com also will be webcasting the World Cup.