Rahlves’ Banzai Tour to launch at Alpine Meadows | SierraSun.com

Rahlves’ Banzai Tour to launch at Alpine Meadows

Staff report

Competitors take part in a previous Rahlves' Banzai Tour at Kirkwood Mountain Resort.

Even as a spectator, the Rahlves' Banzai Tour is bound to make people a little nervous.

The annual race series, which kicks off this weekend at Alpine Meadows, features skiers or snowboarders charging down a wide-open, ungroomed course four at a time, with each hoping to be the first to the bottom. Jockeying for position adds to the challenge presented by Tahoe's terrain. Billed as "the ultimate test of ski and riding skills," catching air while surrounded by other competitors during the mad dash to the bottom is not uncommon.

The Alpine Meadows stop in the series is known as the "Face Banzai." Last year's competition at the resort boasted close contests throughout, with skiers and riders having to pay close attention to snow conditions.

"Steep pitches and high speeds were on the menu at Sunday's finals of the Rahlves' Banzai at Alpine, proving once again that the Banzai is a race like no other," organizers said of last year's race.

More information on the race series is available at http://www.rahlvesbanzai.com.

The event is scheduled to continue at Kirkwood on March 7-8 before concluding at Sugar Bowl on March 14-15.