Author of Story: Kade Krichko with US Ski Team News/USSA.ORG
World Champs Ready to Roll at Deer Valley
PARK CITY, UT (Feb. 1) – Deer Valley Resort is no stranger to big competition. In the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, the resort hosted the freestyle events in what is widely regarded as the most successful Winter Olympics in recent history. Additionally the FIS Freestyle World Cup has stopped at the Deer Valley Resort every year since 2000 and many athletes openly consider it their favorite stop on the FIS circuit. The resort also hosted the 2003 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships, so when Deer Valley got the nod to host the 2011 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships, it seemed a natural choice.
When Deer Valley Resort earned the Freestyle World Champs bid back in 2006, it became the first resort in North America to host the Championships twice. But the freestyle world has changed since 2006. In 2003, the first year Deer Valley Resort held the event, there were 127 athletes from 23 nations. In 2011 the Championships have grown to 313 athletes representing a total of 36 nations.
Another change occured in 2010 when the freestyle community saw the addition of skicross to the Olympics. With skicross added to the bill Deer Valley has worked hard to make alterations to its normal course layout in order to facilitate the moguls, aerials, and skicross competitions.
Rising to the challenge, Deer Valley Resort has produced a spectator-friendly venue directly above the Snow Park Lodge. Deer Valley Resort has made the event free to the public and from the top of the Snowflake lift viewers will be able to see all three events. The competition sites run next to each other with the moguls course on Champion to the spectator’s right, the aerials jumps on White Owl to the spectator’s left, and the skicross course running directly down the middle on Solid Muldoon.
The skicross course features a steep run that flows into the finish area at the base, directly in front of the viewers. Skiers will battle through a series of banked turns, jumps and drops before racing cross the finish line at almost 65mph. Moguls skiers combine technique, speed and style to race down a field of bumps, launching themselves off of two jumps in the process. And, on Friday night, aerialists electrify the crowds with their high-flying acrobatics under the lights.
Immediately following the action, fireworks will top of the on-hill spectacle. And for those who will be enjoying the skiing as well as the events this weekend, send in your best picture and you could snag a new phone from the U.S. Ski Team’s partner Sprint! Visit www.sprintepicmoments.com for more details.