Whistler, BC—Moguls: a snowboarder’s nemesis.
Not since Dano Pendygrasse and Andy Hetzel last dropped in and took their respective national moguls championships in the late 90s have I known a rider take to the bumps with an emotion beyond resent. Sometimes it’s borderline disgust.
Well, the good folks in charge of the Grenade Games-including Dano himself-decided to bring moguls back. But, their motivation was less in the name of healthy competition and more in the name of carnage. And with the dual slalom moguls comp, conditions couldn’t have been worse: ice, ruts, and a few gates set on Blackcomb’s Catskinner bumps.
With a world-class park a mere ropeline rider’s left, the best in the world were seen racing side by side-sometimes even sideslipping-only to huck an air and charge through the finish line in pursuit of nothing more than a wooden plaque and ten-year-old bragging rights…but also a title pursued by some of the best riders around. From Danny Kass to fellow Olympian Justin Lamoreaux and a grip of whistler heads, you had to be fast just to qualify-something I was not. So, relegated to reporter duty, I took in a few Kokanee and hot dogs while enjoying the show.
As the snow attempted to soften, more and more riders filtered in for their runs. In true Grenade Games fashion, things were in full swing by 2 p.m., smoke was in the air, and contenders were whittled down amidst boned-out mute grabs and a few roast beefs-homage to the last real moguls contest, undoubtedly.
But there could only be one winner, and it came down to a couple of local riders: Logan Short and Myrosha Daley. In the end, Daley proved victorious, taking the wooden plaque, a barley shower, and a run down to the slushy reaches of the lower mountain, far away from the icy ruts of Catskinner. From icy bumps to slushy spring laps? Victorious, indeed. But one question remains: where were Dano and Hetzel? We can only hope they will show in pursuit of redemption next year…
Photos: Colin Wiseman
01 Louie Vito laps the bump run
02 Molly Milligan held it down for the female contingent
03 The Dingo actually snowboards
04 The champ gets his prize: a beer on the head and a wooden trophy