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Snowboarding - 07. February 2008.

Chevy Grand Prix Takes on Tamarack

TAMARACK, Idaho (Feb. 5) - The Chevy U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix is back in action for its second tour stop of the year at Tamarack Resort. The event will host the Visa Snowboardcross competition, part of the Visa SBX Championship Series, and a halfpipe competition in Tamarack's legendary superpipe. It's the only pipe in Idaho that features 22-foot walls, the Olympic standard for the 2010 Vancouver Games.

The halfpipe competition will showcase a number of U.S. Snowboarding athletes including Olympic silver medalist and 2008 X Games gold medalist Gretchen Bleiler (Aspen, CO), former X Games medalist Scotty Lago (Seabrook, NH), '07 Grand Prix champ Tommy Czeschin (Mammoth Lakes, CA) and Elijah Teter (South Lake Tahoe, CA), who was third in the Grand Prix's most recent stop in Breckenridge.

"Tamarack was the highlight of our season and it's always one of the best pipes of the year and it does have that buzz. We're all looking forward to riding such a fun pipe," said U.S. Snowboarding Halfpipe Head Coach Mike Jankowski. "The Chevy Grand Prix is the longest running snowboard series in the country. So we show up to ride and to be successful and to make sure our U.S. riders are filling up those podium spots."

The queen of the halfpipe, Bleiler, is on a white-hot streak after winning the first stop of the Chevy Grand Prix in Breckenridge. She went on to school the competition in the Winter X Games where she took home her third X Games gold.

"There's so many good riders and obviously Gretchen's at the top of her game now," Jankowski said. "Certainly she's riding her best ever and so I would definitely expect to see a strong showing from her."

Jankowski added that the team's results at the Breckenridge Grand Prix opened up the doors for a lot of competitors to step forward onto the podium.

"Our team is coming off a strong finish at the Breckenridge Grand Prix. You're going to need to watch out for Elijah and Tommy [Czeschin] is always riding strong. On the rookie side, Lizzy Beerman [Weston, VT] had a great finish in the X Games [sixth] and Kaitlyn Farrington [Bellevue, ID] as well," Jankowski said. "We take things one halfpipe at a time and really give our best every time we show up. Obviously the stakes are higher at some events than others but at the same time our team comes to ride and ride hard."

On the snowboardcross side, riders will be competing in the first of the two-stop Visa SBX Championship Series. The Visa Snowboardcross competition will be fierce. Riders include three-time X Games gold medalist Nate Holland (Squaw Valley, CA), two-time world champ and reigning X Games gold medalist Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton Mountain, VT), Olympic gold medalist Seth Wescott (Carrabassett Valley, ME), and snowboarding legend Shaun Palmer (South Lake Tahoe, CA).

"The Grand Prix is great because it's mostly Americans, so it's pretty fun for our guys to have a race where they really are racing against each other a lot," U.S. Snowboarding Head Coach Peter Foley said. "It will be interesting to see who makes it for the final. We have 10 or 12 really strong Americans to watch."

Foley went on to say that they will have to watch the weather in Tamarack in order to be fully prepared for race conditions.

"It was really snowy and it's supposed to be snowy again this year," Foley said. "When it's real soft and snowy you have to be delicate and you can't edge too hard. You have to make soft moves to carry your speed. We have a lot of really good gliders so that will help them out a lot.

"We had a really good time at Tamarack last year. It's fun to ride there," Foley added.

Adding to the excitement at Tamarack is live entertainment following the competitions including Music Ryan Allen, Josh Martinez, Rocket One, DJ Sparks and Everyday Prophets (over 21 show) on Friday, and Kamphire Collective and DJ Christian (over 21 show) on Saturday night.

Tamarack Competition Schedule:
(All times MT unless indicated)

Friday, Feb. 8
9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Men's halfpipe qualifiers
12:45-2:00 p.m., Women's halfpipe qualifiers

Saturday, Feb. 9
1:30-3:00 p.m., Chevy U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix - halfpipe finals

Sunday, Feb. 10
9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., Snowboardcross time trials
1:30-3:00 p.m., Visa Snowboardcross finals

Broadcast Schedule:
The Chevy Grand Prix boasts one of the best broadcast packages for competitive snowboarding. If you can't make it in-person to Tamarack, you have several options to tune-in to all the action.

New this year is LIVE Webcasting of the Grand Prix halfpipe competition on WCSN.com. And NBC, the Olympic network, and Versus also will have all the action coming from the Tamarack Grand Prix.

Saturday, Feb. 9, 3:30 p.m. ET on WCSN.com
Chevy U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix halfpipe finals, Tamarack, ID

Saturday, Feb. 16, 3:30 p.m. ET on NBC
Chevy U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, Tamarack, ID

Saturday, Feb. 16, 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC
Visa U.S. Snowboardcross Championships, Tamarack, ID

Saturday, Feb. 23, 4:00 p.m. ET on Versus
Chevy U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, Tamarack, ID

Saturday, March 1, 5:00 p.m. ET on Versus
Visa U.S. Snowboardcross Championships, Tamarack, ID
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