MOONLIGHT BASIN – It was a stomp-fest in Three Forks today, with 44 athletes crushing the Three Forks and Dead Goat area of the Headwaters at Moonlight Basin for the finals day of the Subaru Freeride Series. The morning started with blue skies, but clouds rolled in midday.
These athletes had advanced from the first day of competition, out of a field of 82 skiers all vying for 4-star Freeride World Qualifier points and a total of $10,000 in prize money. At the end of the event, Patty Baskins and Hadley Hammer took the top spots of their respective podiums at the first Subaru Freeride Series stop of the 2013 season.
“The skiers really gave this mountain the respect it deserves,” said Head Event Judge Eric Schmitz. “The athletes skied really smart on a venue which can have serious consequences. They managed their speeds in all the right ways and places.”
Coming in first overall for the women was Hadley Hammer, of Jackson, Wyo. The last woman to ski, she chose a bold line that included an air at the top, an impressive sluice through an area between 1st Fork and Whitetail called INS, and a big air near the bottom. She skied flawlessly without hesitation on both days of competition.
Bozeman-based Sasha Dingle also skied an aggressive line, linking several features and a significant straight-line which positioned her on the second podium spot. Rounding out the ladies’ podium, Katrina DeVore from Aspen, Colo. took third overall by executing technically strong, fast and fluid runs.
In the men’s field, a narrow margin of 0.33 points separated the first and second place overall finishers. Skiing out of Vail, Colo., Patty Baskins effortlessly linked several features while introducing style elements like an off-axis 360 to his run today, and a giant mute grab yesterday.
In second place, Christian Boucher, fondly known as “Little C”, demonstrated strong intelligence with his line choice and skied a completely solid run. In third place, Randy Evans, of Bridger Bowl, topped off a smooth run with a giant crowd-pleasing back flip at the bottom.
In addition to podium awards, several riders were nominated for the Sick Bird award. This coveted award, presented by backcountry.com, is granted to riders who challenge not only themselves but also the sport through their athletic performance. The 2013 Moonlight Basin Sick Bird was awarded to Conner Pelton, who was smooth and quick through a super exposed “billy goat” section, which lead to a big air through a straight-line. He finished his run with a cork-360.
Subaru Freeride Series competition continues March 27-31 at Crested Butte Mountain Resort, Colo. and will conclude at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, Utah, April 10-14. The Subaru Freeride Series is sponsored by Subaru, Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, Clif Bar, The North Face, Jagermeister and Black Diamond. The Sick Bird award is presented by backcountry.com.