Baker Banked Slalom — Local’s Qualifier

Mt Baker, WA (January 19, 2010) – Sure, the Olympics are only a few weeks away. But yesterday at Mt Baker there was a qualifier of a different sort: the local’s qualifier for the Legendary Banked Slalom.

Andrea GrahamRain and high winds gave way after first chair to sunny skies and 200-stoked locals vying for 25 spots in the quarter-century-old gathering, which takes place the first week of February. The early morning weather made for deserted slopes and plenty of untracked hot pow both inbounds and out to get the legs warmed up for the race. A single run, it was luck of the draw for many, as one mistake made the difference and as the ruts grew so did the difficulty.

In the end, Glacier locals rode strong and it was Shawn Freyer winning for the pro men and Amy Jo Palumbo taking women’s pro and a spot in the big show. The best times of the day, however, came out of the older ams category with Josh Charles clocking in at 1.18.94 and Masters rider Johnny Martens just behind at 1.19.14—albeit they benefited from getting on course before the ruts got extra-deep for the pros.

Thanks to Laura Bruhns, the Howatts, and the rest of the crew at Baker for putting in the extra time to cater to the locals and make sure that they’re well represented at the LBS. For full results from the qualifier, click here, and see you all there in a couple weeks.


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