KIRKWOOD — On Feb. 1-3, big mountain freeride action meets ski and boarder-cross strategy in a mad-dash race for cash, as Kirkwood Mountain Resort hosts the first stop on the Rahlves’ Banzai Tour, presented by Bank of the West. Taking place at four Lake Tahoe, CA resorts, it’s head–to-head action, four at a time, top to bottom, down a wide open course over natural terrain and snow conditions. This is the ultimate test of ski and riding skills.
“The Rahlves’ Banzai Tour is an exciting event that really utilizes the big-mountain, challenging terrain Kirkwood is known for,” said Casey Blann, Kirkwood’s general manager. “It’s not an easy race or one for the faint of heart. Watching these talented, daring skiers and snowboarders compete, is going to be a thrill.”
Kirkwood is known for a ton of snow and rowdy terrain, and the Rahlves’ Banzai Tour takes advantage of both with the Wall Banzai. The open top section off the Wall winds down into the CEP compression and off the cat road at top of Chair 11 where athletes launch into Snow Snake Gully. From here, it’s riding the gully up on the banks to funneling right down the pipe. Look for passing in the upper section and in the tight turns when a rider is loose on the line. Spectator prime locations are the start on the ridge, cat road crossing at top of Chair 11, skiers left bank of the gully and at the finish for the drag race to the line. Competition registration is open to anyone 18 years old and up.
Daron Rahlves, World Champion, USA Olympic ski racer, Winter X-Games Skier-X Champion and creator of the event, will be on-hand throughout the competition and at the welcome and après parties to sign autographs and conduct interviews with media. Media are invited to meet-and-greet athletes at both the Welcome Party on Feb. 1 and at the Après Party on Feb. 2
On Friday, Feb. 1, from 5-7 p.m., tour participants, including athletes, sponsors, friends, family, media, race crew and resort affiliates, are invited to celebrate the beginning of the Kirkwood tour stop at the Welcome Party at Red Cliffs Lodge with food, drinks and music. This is an ideal setting for athletes and media to mingle, as well as build up excitement for the tour stop.
The solo qualifying timed runs to seed Sunday’s final heats of four will take place on Saturday, Feb. 2 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., with Sunday’s finals also taking place from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. The Rahlves’ Banzai Après Party, hosted by High Fives Foundation, will be held on Feb. 2 at Red Cliffs from 3-6 p.m. During the après party, Daron Rahlves will recognize the Bank of the West “fastest qualifier” and fastest times from each division, as well as announce the winners of the High Fives raffle with sponsor prizes, which includes two Kirkwood lift tickets.
Book your lodging by Jan. 31 and received 25 percent off your entire booking. Book online at kirkwood.com using the promo code “EVENTK” or call 1-800-967-7500.
Kirkwood Mountain Resort is one of the nation’s top destination resorts. Located just 177 miles from the Bay Area along scenic Highway 88, its base elevation of 7,800-feet, assures skiers more annual snowfall than any other resort in North America. Kirkwood is recognized by winter purists and national media alike for the quality of its snow and terrain variety and is a true skier’s destination. Known for its pristine beauty and action-packed expeditions and events, winter fun includes skiing, snowboarding, cross country skiing, snow shoeing, sled dog tours, and backcountry expeditions. An ideal location for weddings and corporate meetings, the Kirkwood Village includes boutique shopping, live music and dining. For more information about Kirkwood Mountain Resort, visit www.kirkwood.com or call 209-258-6000.
About Vail Resorts
Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the leading mountain resort operator in the United States. The Company’s subsidiaries operate the mountain resorts of Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan; and the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The Company’s subsidiary, RockResorts, a luxury resort hotel company, manages casually elegant properties. Vail Resorts Development Company is the real estate planning, development and construction subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc. Vail Resorts is a publicly held company traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: MTN). The Vail Resorts company website is www.vailresorts.com and consumer website is snow.com.