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Cottonwood Heights Journal

Ski & Snowboard News / World Cup comes to Solitude

Aug 25, 2016 04:30PM ● By Harriet Wallis

Snowboard cross Olympians Alex Deibold (l) and Faye Gulini with ski cross athlete Whitney Gardner / photo: Harriet Wallis

These premier athletes are all smiles because their extreme sport competitions -- snowboard cross and ski cross -- will be held at Solitude this winter. It's the first time ever that events of this caliber will be held in Big Cottonwood Canyon.

In snowboard cross, six racers start side by side and charge over berms and around bends and race for the finish line. First one to the bottom wins. Ski cross is similar, but four racers start side by side.

Snowboard cross and ski cross are well established as extreme, sanctioned sports. But for Solitude, this winter's competitions will be a proving ground for the resort which has been named to host the 2019 FIS World Championships that are on the horizon but still several years in the future. 

The announcement of this winter's snowboard cross World Cup and ski cross Grand Prix was made today by officials from both the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) and Solitude Mountain Resort.

When FIS officials were in town last winter, we took them up to the top of Solitude and they looked down and agreed it was an excellent venue, said Bob Wheaton, president and general manager of Deer Valley which also owns Solitude. But we said: Wait! We have two more portions of the mountain to show you. You might like one of them better. The FIS officials agreed that Solitude has three excellent areas on which to stage the races, Wheaton said.

The course is planned to start on Wall Street just below the top of the Apex lift. It will continue onto Main Street with the finish line in the base area. The events are scheduled for Jan 19 - 22, 2017.

Just add snow. Snowboard cross and ski cross will race on this slope. photo/ Harriet Wallis