The Mt Baker Legendary Banked Slalom (LBS) is the snowboard equivalent of the Super Bowl, but with all the corporate sponsorship, live TV broadcasts, and over-the-top hype that surrounds modern day snowboard events. As one of the longest running contests in snowboarding, the LBS is a gathering of some of the best riders in the world in an incredibly laid back scene celebrating the most simple of snowboard skills: the art of the turn.
In the week leading up to the LBS, Mother Nature served up a whopper of a Pacific Northwest weather bomb that closed the highway up to Mt Baker. Operations Manager, Gwyn Howat, and her team were stranded on the mountain preparing the course and hand shovelling chairs in case they were able to open. The highway opened on Thursday under rainy skies with snow in the forecast for the weekend.
The first rounds of qualifying on Friday took place under less than ideal conditions, but heavy snowfall throughout the day softened up the course to classic LBS conditions. With 20 cms falling overnight on Friday, racers warmed up their legs on Saturday morning with a few pow laps. Increased visibility meant qualifying times got faster and faster over the course of the day. The skies fully cleared for classic "Baker Blue" conditions for Sunday's final rounds. Sandbox rider Finn Finestone blazed down the course in 1:19.82 to take the win in the Junior Boys division. Nils Mindnich won the Pro Men's division and Stephanie Haines won the Pro Women's division.
Leanne Pelosi dropping into her first qualifying run on Friday
Tyler Ravelle taking the high line through Turn #1
Truth Smith looks on as Chad Chomlack buffs in a layer of high speed wax.
Truth Smith putting his fresh wax job to the test.
Two thumbs up from Gus Warbington just before he steps into the start hut.
Caleb Chomlack arcing through Turn #1 on his way to qualifying for Sunday's final.
Finn Finestone staying low and powerful on his way to victory in the Junior Boys division.
Finn Finestone (pictured far right) collects one of the most coveted trophies in all of snowboarding; the Gold Duct tape
We're beyond stoked Leanne Pelosi won the first ever Transworld Snowboarding Riders Poll Influencer Award. Leanne has dedicated the past two years of her life to creating, directing, producing, and filming Full Moon film. She also managed to jump in front of the lens are stack enough footage for an amazing section. Check out the footage below from the Transworld Snowboarding Riders Poll awards night. Congrats again, Leanne!
Go behind the scenes of the Full Moon film with Sandbox team rider Leanne Pelosi. The two year project covers the past, present and future of women's snowboarding and features Marie-France Roy, Annie Boulanger, Helen Schettini, Robin Van Gyn, Hana Beaman and Jamie Anderson. Thanks to Lululemon for the video
A snowboard film connecting the past, present and future. Be inspired by women who push boundaries, showcasing legends and icons as they travel for two years around the world riding backcountry. Starring Sandbox team riders Leanne Pelosi and Marie France-Roy along with Helen Schettini, Annie Boulanger, Robin Van Gyn, Hana Beaman, and Jamie Anderson
Shot on location: Whistler, Mica Heli, Bella Coola Heli, Haines AK, Aosta Valley Italy, Golden Alpine Holidays BC, Baldface Lodge BC.
Leanne Polosi grew up in Calgary, Alberta playing soccer in the summers and hitting the snow in the winter. She has a bachelors degree in science and is a self-labeled "computer geek". She’s done it all in snowboarding from competing in world class events to running all girls snowboard camps and producing world class films with the top female riders in the game. This ‘geek’ is one of the most decorated women’s riders on the planet with awards like; ESPN’s top 50 action sports athlete, Transworld's Rookie of the Year, Rider of the Year and Readers Choice to name a few.
"Kevin helped me a lot in my early years coming up as a snowboarder. I'm super stoked to be part of a rider owned company from my hometown of Whistler, BC."
- Leanne Pelosi
"I’ve known Leanne for a long time now and watched her progress and grow to be a multi-faceted snowboarder. I’m really proud of how far she’s taken her snowboarding and how much she’s given back to our shred community through her camps and video projects. Sandbox will be supporting her latest two-year Full Moon Film project so keep a look out for that dropping Fall 2017. We’re stoked Leanne’s reppin’ Sandbox!"