Words and Photos: Mike Yoshida
It’s been a good 6 years since I’ve actually been around to enjoy a Banked Slalom weekend, and I’m so glad that I’ve made it back to my favorite event. The LBS always brings together so many like minded friends and shred enthusiasts from all over the world.
In true Mt Baker fashion, during the three days of competition we saw just about every kind of weather. The first qualifying day was drizzling rain, and then the next was sunny, but it quickly cooled and turned to snow. Conditions on the course went from spring slush to ice walls in a matter of 24 hours, and that made for quite a challenging setup. One false move around an icy banked turn could result in a high speed washout that would send you flying out of the course. Needless to say, there was a high percentage of disqualifications today.
The ones to watch were: Terje Haakonsen, Blair Habenicht, Josh Dirksen, Temple Cummins, and Lucas Debari. These were the guys that really looked like they were pushing it to the limits of how fast you should ride on the icy banked turns. For the women, Maelle Ricker, Laura Hadar and Maria Debari were first, second and third, this will have been Maelle’s sixth gold in a row. Terje won the Pro Men’s with Dirksen in second and Temple in third. Haakon had to take off early to fly out for the world championships in Norway, so Duncan Howat, Mt. Baker’s longtime General Manager accepted Terje’s golden duct tape roll, as requested by the legend himself.
This is the original soulful contest, and not much has changed since I first experienced banked slalom. Aside from being a bigger event, it still draws me in because of the good people, good food, and an amazing mountain to ride and enjoy with everyone. The race is a true test of ones board control, because you look at the guys who are winning, and you can just tell by the way they turn that they have it. Although turning your snowboard is probably the most basic and simple manuevers done, it takes a certain finesse and style to do it the way Terje, Dirksen or Temple do it.
2012 Legendary Mt. Baker Banked Slalom Results
Pro Men Terje Haakonsen 1:25.66
Pro Women Maelle Ricker 1:31.81
Pro Masters – Mark Fawcett 1:31.56
Pro Women Masters – Barrett Christy 1:39.43
Next Generation – Milo Malkoski 1:44.70
Juniors – Jacob Krugmire 1:36.63
Younger Amateurs – Ryan Roemer 1:34.33
Women Amateurs – Danielle Davis 1:49.19
Older Amateurs – Nate Kewin 1:33.19
Masters – Adam Haynes 1:31.72
Mid Masters – Gorio Bustamante 1:37.79
Grand Masters – Randy Haugen 1:57.53