Monday, October 28, 2013

Winter Games

Skiers warm-up run on the halfpipe
Due to Amy and my lack of working or as society would put it, "doing anything useful with our lives," we decided to help out and volunteer at the Queenstown Winter Games. This was a world class event for international skiers and snowboarders being part of the qualifications for the upcoming Winter Olympics. A bonus of volunteering was to get the best seat in the house, a free lunch and some extra day passes to Cadrona Ski Field. Amy did one day at Cadrona and one at Coronet with me and I did a few additional days on some very snowy days at Cadrona. Our duties varied but Amy mostly enjoyed her role as Start Marshall for the Ski half pipe qualifiers, while I was a slipper. Basically, Amy called for the athletes up next to get ready and line up and I slid down the pipe smoothing out the tracks every so often. At Coronet, in appalling snow conditions we were gate judges on the Slalom ski racing. We had to ensure the skiers passed correctly through the gates. With no second chances, we felt very uneasy that our call could end their chances to the Olympics. Luckily, neither of us had to record a missed gate.

Amy and I in our fluro volunteer vests.
Having the games in town was a very cool experience. The opening ceremony was legit with athletes coming into the ceremony on jet boats and all the usual hoo-haa associated with a big event like this. There was a 'Village' set up in the centre of town where each evening they awarded medals, had bands playing and had snowboarding films playing. This was also where we could get a free drink for each day of volunteering we had done. 

We used one of our free days sking to go to Cadrona and see the Snowboard half pipe qualifiers and have a good ski around the field. We were very inpressed with the snowboarding and I even headed out into the back country for some powder and a few hits on the big booter formed by a windlip.

Getting gnarly with a 360 tailgrab off the booter

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