Twisting, flipping, flying

SoBe Mavericks Superpipe Challenge on Saturday

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Mavericks Superpipe, the longest superpipe in North America, hosts the fourth annual SoBe Mavericks Superpipe Challenge on Saturday.

Skiers and riders will have the opportunity to twist, flip and fly through the pipe for prizes at the Steamboat Ski Area.

"The combination of world-class athletes and North America's longest superpipe shows Steamboat's dedication to the sport of freeride and provides electrifying family entertainment," said Doug La Placa, director of marketing for the ski area.

The Mavericks Superpipe is 48 feet wide and 650 feet long with a quarterpipe kicker at the end. The walls are 15 feet high, and the transitions are 17 feet, giving competitors the opportunity to execute twice as many airs as usual.

Race day registration runs from 8 to 10 a.m. Saturday at the Bear River Bar & Grill in Gondola Square. The competition begins at 10 a.m., and judges will rate competitors based on overall impression, trick difficulty, execution and amplitude.

An awards ceremony is at 3:30 p.m. in Gondola Square right before the Young Dubliners concert.

The entry fee is $20 and a special $29 lift ticket for contestants will be available. Season passes will be honored. All competitors must wear a helmet, and those 18 and younger need a parent's signature on the release form.

Early registration is available by calling 871-5387. Spectators are welcome and encouraged to come watch the competition, and the best place to watch is at the bottom away from the pipe's exit point. The Mavericks Superpipe is in the SoBe Terrain Park accessed from the Bashor lift or the Christie lifts.

Results will be posted at www.steamboatfreeride.com.

-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail mmawdsley@steamboatpilot.com

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