It is fair to say the Boxes For Days concept works; it didn’t feel like a contest, but people were winning free product. The riding was old-fashioned fun, without the pressure to try technical tricks or hitting features that were too challenging. Pro riders were riding against weekend warriors, and the format provided an almost level playing field. There was a cheap sausage sizzle, sweet music and plenty of smiling.
Transfer Snowboard Magazine | Alex Cameron
The idea behind Boxes For Days is to reinvent snowboarding competitions by increasing the fun and decreasing the serious.
Dane Tiene, the star performer of the day, riding through the Boxes For Days course. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
The format for Boxes has been successfully used throughout the United States and Japan. Bringing it down under, the event at Selwyn Snowfields was a rip roaring success on Saturday the 2nd July. Big shout outs to Chewy, RJ, Evan and the rest of the Selwyn park crew who made a benign looking tubing area into a super fun zone in a couple of hours on Friday afternoon.
A quick stop for supplies in Jindabyne guaranteed the vibe would stay mellow all day. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
Although Saturday dawned a wee bit cloudy at Selwyn, it cleared perfectly at 10.30 allowing the riders to start eyeing off the course. By 11 the event started under a big blue sky with booming beats from the Red Bull truck piloted by DJ RJ, who kept the vibe pumping all day.
The Jindabyne crew arrives under cloudy skies. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
The course was challenging enough that some of the top riders had spills, but fun enough that all competitors had a real chance at the major prize which was an entire set-up from Mervin including a board/bindings and outerwear. The youngest competitor Declan Gear (13) almost smoked first prize in the opening half hour.
First look at the 2011 Boxes For Days set up. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
To be crowned winner the competitors needed to ride the entire box line then transfer on to a wall ride, launch out of the wall ride to bin bonk and finally ride out a little flat box. This little end section proved to be the hardest to complete.
Riders of all abilities were having a crack at the course. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
Many of the riders were getting to the wall ride but then blowing out or over riding the last couple of features.
Dane Tiene ended up getting the entire way at around 12 pm although this was by no means the end of the event. With many more prizes in the “kitty” the course was changed slightly. The last flat box was removed, and the bonk bin moved further from the wall ride forcing riders to take more speed through the whole course. Competitors now had to make the rail section and then boost over the bin, tapping it on the way through to claim the bounty.
Again everyone including Tom Pelley, Dane Tiene, Pete Long and Harry Crean gave it everything they had.
Dane mentioned to me that he thought it may not have been possible, stuck his sunnies on his face and proceeded to claim the secondary prize… cheeky bugger.
Tom who had been ripping all day managed to board slide the whole thing claiming third prize.
Tom Pelley on his way to board sliding the whole course to claim the aptly named “boardslide prize”. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
Wiki Jones amazed the crowd and claimed the womens first prize… beating talent inlcuding Jess Rich, Biba Turnbull and Amber Arazny.
Harry Crean was a standout rider, and standout consumer of Oettingers, at the event which happened to fall on his birthday. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
On the day, everyone had a ball. The session on the two rails to the right and wall ride at the end of the day just put icing on the cake for spectators and competitors alike. It really summed up what the day was meant to achieve – bringing fun back into competitions in Australia. We now look forward to Baw Baw upping the ante.
Tom Pelley led the session after the contest on the wallride and flat rails. Photo:: Ethan Leduc
Big thanks to Selwyn Snowfields, Mervin Manufacturing and Marcus Stocker in particular for putting on an awesome day.