Jeep King of the Mountain races at Squaw | SierraSun.com
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Jeep King of the Mountain races at Squaw

Skiers in one of last year's Jeep King of the Mountain races.
Photo © Tim Hancock |

The Jeep King of the Mountain Series, now in its 13th season as professional snow sports most prestigious event, will soon head to Squaw Valley, Calif., for the grand finale of the 2005-2006 Professional Skiing & Snowboarding World Championships.The Jeep King of the Mountain Series, which offers the richest cash purse in snow racing, will feature 32 of the worlds top skiers and snowboarders competing head-to-head to capture the coveted title of World Professional Champion as well as a share of the record prize payout topping $450,000 plus $20,000 in additional bonuses from John Paul Mitchell Systems. Adding to the allure of the event, this year the keys to four new 2006 Jeep Commanders will be presented to the mens and womens ski and snowboard champions. The event will begin with a National Open Qualifier on Saturday, Feb. 25, allowing top-notch amateur and professional ski and snowboard racers to earn a spot against the worlds best for a shot at the title of World Professional Champion. Then, on the evening of Saturday, Feb. 25, the top ski qualifiers and registered skiers will take to the racecourse in the finals of the World Championships. The snowboard finals will take place on Sunday, Feb. 26 around noon.Running from December 2005 through February 2006, the Jeep King of the Mountain Series features races at some of the most spectacular outdoor havens in the U.S. and Canada, each offering world-class recreational facilities and breathtaking scenic backdrops. In December, the season kicked off at Crested Butte, Colo., before beginning the New Year with an event at Sunshine Village, Banff. The most recent event took place earlier in February at Sunday River, Maine.At the finals at Squaw, the the athletes will be competing for double points, meaning that even those athletes in third, fourth and fifth have a strong change of overtaking the leaders to win the title of World Professional Champion.Squaw Valley USA is one of the worlds premier destination resorts, with year-round recreation and first class accommodations. The resort offers you access to over 4,000 acres of skiable terrain. Spread over six peaks, and accessed by the most advanced lift system in the world, this world-class destination resort enjoys an annual snowfall of over 37 feet and an abundance of warm California sunshine nearly 300 days of the year. With its immense size, variety of terrain, abundance of activities, exciting events and Olympic heritage Squaw Valley USA offers one unique experience after another for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities. A national audience will be able to view the Jeep King of the Mountain Series race from Squaw Valley on March 25 from 1-2 p.m. EST and on nationally syndicated television across the U.S. between March 13 and April 2. In addition to broadcast coverage, skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts can now view the Jeep King of the Mountain Series online. Through a special partnership with Ski Press Magazine, the website http://www.skipresstv.com will allow race fans to follow their favorite ski and snowboard athletes during each race of the 2005-2006 Professional Skiing & Snowboarding World Championships. The site will also carry archived footage and highlights from some of the best races in the 13-year-old events storied history.Formerly a pure downhill series, the Jeep King of the Mountain Series has established a reputation for drawing the most elite skiers and snowboarders of the sport, and carries with it a rich history of past Olympic champions, such as Jean-Luc Cretier (98 Nagano), Tommy Moe (94 Lillehammer), Josef Polig (92 Albertville), Pirmin Zurbriggen (88 Calgary), Bill Johnson (84 Sarajevo), Leonard Stock (80 Lake Placid), and Franz Klammer (76 Innsbruck). The 2005-2006 Series will maintain that legacy, with a line-up that has produced Olympic medals, world championship titles, national titles and numerous world cup victories between them. The Jeep King of the Mountain Series implements an innovative racecourse known as The Y, which delivers high-speed excitement in a format that combines the technical skill of Parallel Giant Slalom with the cutting edge drama of skiercross and boardercross. The Y has proved ideal for skiers and snowboarders alike, and the Jeep King of the Mountain Series is the only series to combine the racing elements of these two sports into one event. Racers begin on separate courses and must maneuver Parallel Giant Slalom turns. Midway through the course, racers meet at the Y, the point where the two parallel courses merge into one. There, skiers and snowboarders must race side-by-side on a single course while negotiating banked turns and single and double rollers leading to an exciting finish.The Jeep King of the Mountain was established in 1993. Jeep is the title sponsor for the Jeep King of the Mountain Series. The Professional Skiing & Snowboarding World Championships are the sister competition to summertimes Jeep King of the Mountain Professional Mountain Biking World Championships. Other marketing partners for this season include: Atomic, Columbia Sportswear Company, Edge Advanced shave gel, John Paul Mitchell Systems, Mopar, Sirius Satellite Radio and Ski Press Magazine.

All spectators need to get on the Funitel at the base of Squaw. Those on skis or snowboards should then take the Siberia lift and ski down towards Motts Madness until they see the Jeep King of the Mountain course. The courst is actually on Motts Madness. The best views are at the top or along side of the course.If spectators are not on skis or boards, they should take the Funitel and then walk approximately 400 meters to the finish corral, where they can see the final stretch and finish line.

SKIINGMenDavey Barr (CAN) – X Games ChampionMartin Fiala (GER) – 2005 JKOM Champion, Former OlympianEnak Gavaggio (FRA) – X Games ChampionIsidor Gruner (AUT) – 2nd Overall in 2005 FIS Skier Cross World ChampionshipsTomas Kraus (CZE) – 2005 FIS World Cup winner and FIS World ChampionCasey Puckett (Aspen, Colo., USA) – 2004 JKOM Champion, Four-Time OlympianWomenBrett Buckles (USA) – 2005 Winter Gravity Games Gold Medalist Ophelie David (FRA) – 2003 FIS World Cup ChampionAnik Demers (CAN) – Canadian National Ski TeamKarin Huttary (AUT) – 2005 JKOM Champion, US Freeskiing Open Gold MedalistMagdalena Iljans (SWE) – Silver Medalist 2005 World ChampionshipsFranziska Steffen (SUI) – Three Top-10 World Cup finishes in 2003-2004 seasonSNOWBOARDINGMenJasey Jay Anderson (CAN) – 2005 JKOM Champion, 19-time World Cup Titlist Lukas Gruner (AUT) – 2nd Overall in 2006 FIS Snowboard Cross StandingsJeff Greenwood (USA) – Member U.S. Snowboard Team, JKOM 2005 Titlist (Utah)Dieter Krassnig (AUT) – 53 Top-10 World Cup finishesGuillaume Nantermod (SUI) – Former FIS World Champion, Ranked 4th in WorldGraham Watanabe (USA) -1st at Valle Nevado World Cup, 1st at South American CupWomenChristelle Doyon (CAN) – Canadian National Championships and World Cup ParticipantDoresia Krings (AUT) – 2005 World Cup Champion in Snowboard Cross Leslee Olson (USA) – Member U.S. Snowboard Team and Winter X GamesJulie Pomalgaski (FRA) – Multiple World Cup Titlist Manuela Riegler (AUT) – 2005 FIS World ChampionUrsula Smith (USA) – 2003 ISF Snowboard X Silver MedalistIn addition to the roster of pre-qualified invited athletes, the Jeep King of the Mountain Series will continue to incorporate the highly popular National Open Qualifier system at each event, allowing top-notch amateur and professional ski and snowboard racers to earn a spot against the worlds best for a shot at the title of World Professional Champion. Additional National Open Qualifier registration information can be found at http://www.jeepsports.com.


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