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
In the lead up to the Para Snowboard World Championships in Kelowna, BC, CBC sports profiles Sandbox athlete John Leslie. At the age of 10, Leslie was diagnosed with an osteogenic sarcoma in his left knee and underwent a surgery which removed the cancerous bone in his knee. The surgery rotated and reattached his foot where his knee had been which allows his foot to operate his prosthetic. Check out the full interview below.
Winter 2017 is in full swing, but we're already showcasing our 2018 line of helmets, goggles, and softgoods at retailer trade shows around the world. We've been developing this product for the last 12 months and we're stoked we finally get to share it with you. Here's a sneak peek of a few awesome things we have in store for 2018.
We're really hyped on our brand new goggle for 2018: The Kingpin. The Kingpin offers superior vision and comfort with a medium sized cylindrical lens on a sleek, frameless design. It features a helmet compatible fit, triple layer face foam, perimeter frame and lens venting, Italian-made dual layer high impact scratch resistant lens, 100% UV protection, embedded anti-fog, interchangeable lens design and a silicon grip strap. Also debuting with The Kingpin is our all-new Polarized Shift lens. The photochromic technology automatically adjusts to any lighting conditions Mother Nature throws at you and polarization reduces glare. You'll never have to change your lens again. The Kingpin is available in 3 colourways pictured below.
The Kingpin Goggle in Black with Polarized Shift lens.
Kingpin Goggles in Black Camo with Gold Ion Lens (bonus Yellow/Blue Ion lens) and White with Pink Ion lens (bonus Blackout lens).
Kevin Sansalone rocking the new Kingpin in Black Camo with Gold Ion lens
Next up is our premium line of Apex helmets. Available in the Legend and Classic 2.0 shapes, our Apex line features the BOA fit system, a removable plush/washable comfort liner and plush Audio Ready ear covers, neck cozy and chin strap and a deep metallic matte finish. The Apex line also features our metallic-under-matte paint finish which gives each helmet a really cool rich pearlescent look. Both models have a vented low profile hard-core EPS liner and removable goggle clip. Check out the new Apex models below.
The Legend Snow Apex in Slate [Matte], Bordeaux [Matte], and Ocean [Matte].
Classic 2.0 Snow Apex in Mulberry [Matte], Blue Steel [Matte], and Graphite [Matte].
If you're looking to make a statement with your next helmet, we have a few incredible print colourways in the Classic 2.0 Snow. These helmets are already generating a lot of hype.
Classic 2.0 Snow in Black Floral [Matte], Spaced Out [Matte], and Burgundy Floral [Matte].
All of the above gear will be available in Fall 2017 on our website and from our fine retailers.