Tyler Ceccanti ripping some of "the best runs of his life" with Andy Mahre and the CMH crew
Tyler Ceccanti ripping some of "the best runs of his life" with Andy Mahre and the CMH crew. Super deep powder, pillows and epic tree runs make up this sneak peek of what is to come in our 62nd film.
Over the weekend the third and final event in the Rahlves Banzai Series took place at Sugar Bowl, CA. The Silver Belt Banzai race went down on March 12-13 and competitors and spectators alike came out in force despite variable snow and weather conditions.
Over the weekend the third and final event in the Rahlves Banzai Series took place at Sugar Bowl, CA. The Silver Belt Banzai race went down on March 12-13 and competitors and spectators alike came out in force despite variable snow and weather conditions. Basically a skiercross down natural terrain, the Rahlves Banzai’s are a unique type of race showcasing the challenging natural terrain of the area and talents of the skiers and snowboarders who participate.
This was the inaugural season of the Rahlves Banzai series, created by 4-time Olympian turned big mountain freeskier Daron Rahlves. The tour was created to “build off the success of the last two Silver Belt Banzai’s and take it to other cool places like Alpine Meadows and Kirkwood,” said Rahlves. The Beaver Bowl Banzai at Alpine Meadows and the Eagle Bowl Banzai at Kirkwood took place earlier this season. Each stop in the series featured a $10,000 cash prize purse with an additional $10,000 in prize money for the overall tour winners. Daron Rahlves had opted out of competing in the three tour stops, acting instead as ambassador, promoter, forerunner, and coach, leaving the door open for others to win.
The events at Alpine Meadows and Kirkwood were clearly a success with as many as 200 hundred competitors filling the Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard Divisions. The venues provided challenging terrain for the racers and, equally as important, excellent viewing for spectators. Hundreds of spectators came out for each event reveling not only in the head to head off-piste skicross racing action but also the fun and festive atmosphere of the event. Prior to the racing over the weekend, Rahlves was pleased with how the series had gone so far, saying that the success of the first two stops had “already exceeded my expectations.” Having only forerun the courses and done some follow-cam work at the two earlier Banzai events it was clear that Rahlves was fired up to race for all the marbles in the Super Final of the Banzai Series.
The Banzai Series is an especially cool event because it attracts all types of skiers. Jamaica Ski Team’s Errol Kerr and former U.S. freestyler Shelly Robertson are mixing it up with professional freeskiers like Blake Nyman and local Tahoe rippers whom you’ve probably never heard of. Ex racers, big mountain competition skiers, and average Joe’s all had a chance to win big in an event like this.
On Saturday competitors brought their “A” games and threw down blistering qualifying runs in the Silver Belt Gully. Third place Men’s qualifier Greg Lindsey said, “The course was super fast, super rugged, it really tested everyone’s limits.” Things got really interesting on Sunday under grey skies with very poor visibility and intermittent wet snowfall as the top qualifiers went head to head, 4 at a time, with hopes of making it to the final round.
When all was said and done, Squaw Valley ripper Greg Lindsey claimed the coveted Silver Belt Buckle taking first for the men followed by Kyle Smaine, Errol Kerr, and George Hjelte rounding out the top 4. Shannon Rahlves took top honors for the ladies for the third year in a row followed closely by Keely Kelleher, Hannah Jermstad, and Quincy Young finishing 4th. Marcus Caston and Shannon Rahlves were rewarded for their consistency and claimed a little extra cash and the overall titles as Banzai Champions for the Men and Women respectively.
Rahlves finally got his chance to shine when he took on the Men’s Ski division winners from all three stops in a winner take all, dash for the cash, Super Final for $10,000. The Super Final took place Sunday afternoon and Daron Rahlves took on Marcus Caston, John Bochenek, and Greg Lindsey. Not surprisingly, Daron Rahlves, the most decorated male downhiller in U.S. history, raced to victory over the other three Banzai champions. After finishing second to Daron in today’s Super Final, Greg Lindsey said that he did everything he could but, “That guy is incredibly fast.” Greg’s statement is a confirmation of something that most of us already knew, but only a few had the guts to learn firsthand.
For more information go to: www.rahlvesbanzai.com
Daron Rahlves' Banzai Tour mixes big mountain freeride action with ski & boarder-cross strategy at three of Tahoe's premier resorts. Check out the footage here.
Daron Rahlves' Banzai Tour has been quite a success so far in it's inaugural year. This racing event mixes big mountain freeride action with ski & boarder-cross strategy at three of Tahoe's premier resorts, Alpine Meadows, Kirkwood and Sugar Bowl. With a $10,000 prize awaiting the winner of each tour stop, these athletes are going big or going home.
125 racers registered at the first tour stop, the Beaver Bowl Banzai hosted by Alpine Meadows Jan 22-23. Errol Kerr dominated the men's competition all the way until the last heat of the day when he was edged out by FIS racer, Marcus Caston. Daron's sister, Sharon Rahlves took first place in the women's competition, beating Shelly Robertson, formerly of the US Ski Team. In the men's snowboard division, Sylvain Duclos of France won the final heat and Alison Martin won the women's snowboard division.
Kirkwood Mountain Resort played host to the Eagle Bowl Banzai, second stop on the tour, where 111 racers came prepared to brave the variable conditions. John Bochenek of Squaw Valley took the top tier on the men's skier podium while Big Sky Montana's Keely Kelleher won the womens division. Jayson Hale and Marge Cossettini took first place in the snowboard division.
The Tour Final and Super Final events will take place March 12-13 at the Silver Belt Bazai hosted by Sugar Bowl Ski Resort. $10,000 will go to the Overall Tour Winner and an addidional $10,000 to the Super Final Winner.
Check out footage from the tour below and go to http://www.rahlvesbanzai.com/ for more information.
The up and coming big mountain athlete on polar bears, big mountain comps, and her first filming experience with Warren Miller Entertainment.
Lexi duPont, flew back from China for the premiere of Wintervention in Boulder, Colorado. DuPont, a Warren Miller athlete and University of Colorado student, has been on a semester at sea program. She hadn’t seen any of the footage, not even a trailer, because the internet on the massive ship she was sharing with several hundred students had spotty service. Needless to say, she was pretty excited to see herself on screen for the first time.
duPont, of Sun Valley, Idaho, is humble in the face of success. She attributes her recent pro-freeskier status to timing and several supportive women. She’s been surrounded by influential and aggressive female freeskiers since she was born. Lexi’s mom, Holley duPont, was the first woman in the world to do a backflip on skis. Lynsey Dyer was her babysitter, and last year she lived with Subaru Freeskiing World Tour athlete, Jacqui Edgerly. She told us about switching from racing to freesking, and what it sounds like to hear your own voice in a movie theater.-Leah Fielding
We caught up with Hugo Harrisson to talk about bone spurs, skiing the Chic Choc, and his new segment in Warren Miller Entertainment's Wintervention.
Hugo Harrisson is a three-time IFSA World Tour Champion and a perennial fixture in both Warren Miller and MSP films. If you have never seen Hugo’s film segments… well…his skiing speaks for itself.
We’re stoked for the premiere of Wintervention; the trailer looks great. What can you tell us about your segment?
My trip to Austria was very fun. I have skied in Lech once before but it was early in the season. I was excited to go back there in the winter to see more of that place. When we arrived we had perfect conditions, we probably could have gotten there a day before but that was ok, we had perfect timing. The next day, we started filming for a week straight. The weather was really good and we had a lot of fun exploring this zone. It was early March when we did this trip so after a week the conditions changed a lot. I was with Karine and Loraine from the Kastle pro team. They are both very stoked on skiing so it made the trip very good. Loraine was in her hometown so she showed us a lot of good spots. It was a perfect trip, but the whole time I was dealing with major bone spur pain in my foot. By the end of the week I was really happy to get out of my boots!
Sounds like an adventure. What have you been up to this summer?
My summer has been very good. I work construction from early May until the end of November. I spend all my summer on Vancouver Island in Tofino. I work, surf and take care of my son Sebastien.
You have appeared in Matchstick Production films for the last eight years. How does shooting with Warren Miller Entertainment compare to shooting with MSP?
They are both very similar. Everyday you are trying to go get a shot. With MSP you’re trying to get as many shots as you can over the entire season. With Warren Miller I was on a two-week trip so I tried to get as many shots as I could during that period of time. I have a good time filming with both of them. Every trip is different; that’s the good part. I always go somewhere and try to make the best out of it. For me, filming is a good way to go out and ski some nice lines!
You have been on the Kastle pro team since 2007 and get to help design skis. Is there anything you are currently working on with them that you’re excited about?
Kastle is very fun to work with because they like to make products that ski well. We exchange ideas all the time. We made a new ski this year- it's 128 underfoot. It's very fat, but it ski’s on its own. Kastle is always trying to make their skis better— it very fun to be part of that!
Any big plans for the coming season?
I have a few ideas but I always try to decide last minute so I can get better conditions. I would love to go back home in Quebec…in the Chic Choc. I skied a lot there when I was younger so it would be great to go back there. Alaska is always a place where I like to go back every season if I can. I will probably do a lot around my home in Whistler as well, we always have very good conditions and it's easy… because I know all the spots!
Warren Miller Entertainment's Wintervention Premieres on October 19 at the Xango Grand Theatre in Orem, Utah. All attendees will receive a free mid-week lift ticket to The Canyons Resort in Park City, Utah.
For more info and to find showtime near you check out:
"I'm used to downhill, but this powder thing is pretty fun!"
As we're filming for next season's movie we headed out to Vail to shoot Lindsey Vonn. Turns out it was a powder day. Enjoy the footage!
Chris Davenport and Stian Hagen have been up in Alaska for the last two weeks filming for this fall's movie. Take a look at their notes, photos, and video from the trip.
From Chris Davenport:
Hi Everyone, I have been up here in Girdwood, Alaska for the last two weeks filming for next fall's Warren Miller movie and it has been a bit of a roller-coaster ride. We had some good film days to start the trip off but then got shut down by weather for 5 days in a row. Fortunately luck was on our side and Mother Nature was kind as we just absolutely killed it yesterday out in the Chugach Mountains with some perfect snow and steep lines. Stian Hagen and I are the skiers, Chris Patterson the cameraman, and Tom Evans the photographer. Big shout out to our safety guides Rob Durny and Brad Cosgrove as well.
Enjoy the photos here in the Gallery!
- Chris Davenport
From Stian Hagen:
Wow! I just had one of my best days of heli skiing yesterday! We had a pretty tough start to the trip, lots of down days, and on the days we actually got out we were dealing with some very unstable snow conditions. Down days have been pretty good here in Girdwood as we have had the resort to ski, and also done some cat skiing. Unstable snow in Ak is a very frightening prospect as a lot of the lines have major exposure, the first day we set of a couple of slides, and then we had a few more days of snow. The next time we went out we saw a lot of natural avalanche activity in the terrain, and it also got really warm. We skied some smaller lines, but stayed away from the really good stuff. The weather report looked pretty bad for the next 5 days, but miraculously yesterday morning was clear. We headed out to a zone called Spinecell. The coolest zone i have ever seen or skied! Spine after spine after spine in perfect snow!
Here is a little edit of the footage Chris and I got from Ak. All the riding/action shots are shot on the GoPro HD and Chris Canon S90, pocket digital camera, so don’t try to look at this on a 60″ plasma screen!
I hope you enjoy it!
- Stian Hagen
This is going to look spectacular on a 40 foot screen!
Notes written by Mark Piquette.
The crew woke up at Canadian Mountain Holidays to clouds and light snow on the first day of filming, but it's Canada so that does not mean they were sitting around the lodge waiting for something to break. It was time to head out and do some tree skiing! It was GO from the gun for the skiers. After about a 100 meter warm up ski, Jonny Moseley and Andy Mahre were checking out lines off a cliff band while Chris Patterson, Josh Haskins and Ilja Herb got the cameras set up. That is the tough part for the skiers. Filming sounds fun, and it is, but there is a lot of waiting as the shot is set up. The skiers sometimes have to ski some pretty challenging lines not being totally warmed up or having stood around for awhile. The skiers worked the trees and different pillow lines all day and the film crew got some great footage. Enjoy!
Day two of the shoot with Canadian Mountain Holidays saw a continuation of day one, clouds and snow. The crew knocked out some shooting around the lodge and helicopters while they waited for the light to improve. In the meantime Chris Patterson, Director of Photography for Warren Miller Entertainment, used the steady cam to track Andy Mahre walking out to the helicopter. Once the light came up it was time to load in the helicopter and head back out. The 407 with the cineflex flew out and filmed the 212. Check out the footage to see the 407 flying in front of our crew with the cineflex pointing back towards us. Be sure to see the feature film this fall, because it is going to look spectacular on a 40 foot screen! The CMH guides found some good pillow lines for the Jonny Moseley and Andy Mahre to hit. Most of the lines had never even been skied before! Enjoy the footage of Andy skiing a great series of pillows with the cineflex. He just danced off 5 or 6 pillows and made it look easy! After that, back into the trees for some good footage for the rest of the day. A back flip from Jonny and a corked 540 from Andy will also make for some great shots on the big screen. Enjoy this quick video of highlights from the day.