Saturday, March 9, 2013

Atomic Waymaker - New format of Skimo Competition!

Its seems like a far fetched dream to have a competition that encompasses all that makes for a perfect day of skiing in the mountains.  A format that encompasses all aspects of route assessment, risk assessment, group dynamics, aesthetics, variety, technicality, vertical skied and of course finding those beautiful un tracked lines.  Atomic has partnered up with Kilian Jornet and taken this bold step in creating a completely new format of skimountaineering competition that does just this.  Welcome the inaugural Atomic WayMaker.
  With the nature of this event it is limited to 8 teams of 3 selected by the organizers to meet there criteria of having the strongest possible teams.  Andrew Mcnab, Mark Smiley, and my self applied knowing that the competition was fierce for those 8 spots, we named the team United states of Canada.  Having worked together in the past we knew each member was well suited for this event and we could have a competitive team however we knew it was still a long shot to get in.

3 days ago we got the good news and we are very excited to take part in this historical event.  Now its on to focusing and preparing our self's to preform at our best next month.  The interesting part about this event is that the focus on training is very broad covering everything from building quick efficient anchors to executing that one killer photo with efficiently and creativity.  We will be studying the maps and we plan to head down 5 days early to scout out routes and really get a feel for the area.  Each day has a start and end point with an allotted amount of time (9hrs) to do any variation within the boundaries of the event.

Each team must submit a route plan to be approved before starting out on day 1.  Once approved the teams must stick to the plan unless something like weather changes and the risk becomes to high.  Suunto has been very generous and donated new GPS watch's to the athletes so the judges can watch every move live.  Cell phones from Redbull mobile will allow each team to make mandatory reports/check ins during the day. On each climb and descent during the race it is mandatory to take a photo to submit to the judges edited with some text describing the route.
Assent up West ridge, descent down North Face.
Adhering to strict rules for safety measures a team will be disqualified if they are endangering them self's or others during the competition.

The jury making these calls and the ones who each team will need to impress consists of;

Heli Putz, Dachstein mountain guide, organizer and head judge of the event.

Hannes Arch, Red Bull Air Race World Champion and BASE jumper.

Beat Kammerlander, a native of the Voralberg region of Austria, alpine all-rounder and one of the world's best sports climbers.

Andreas "Ringo" Ringhofer, the most successful Austrian athlete in the Ski Mountaineering World Cup.

Matthias "Hauni" Haunholder – a member of the Atomic International Freeski Team and one of the Invited Riders at the Freeride World Tour.

For more info see,

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