The Fourth Annual Transfer Banked Slalom is being hyped as the best so far. On a sunny spring Sunday, Aussie snowboard mag Transfer hosted Australia’s premiere banked slalom event in front of an enthusiastic crowd of revelers. The course looked fantastic with new fresh snow due to uncharacteristic, late season blizzards, softening up under the clear skies.

The original dates for the race had to be pushed back due to the snow storms. So the break in the weather was welcomed by the Thredbo Park team. The crew worked hard on the final course construction, running it down cruiser on the far right of the resort above Merrits. The end result was a challenging, flowing, fast course that resulted in some tight, technical, high speed turns. The format was a best of two run open session. With riders going back to back, the action kept the hordes hyped all afternoon.

Terje Håkonsen on course at the TBS 17
Terje Håkonsen on course at the TBS 17

A true international event, the TBS was thrilled to see snowboarding legends, Terje Håkonsen, Mike Ravelson and Pat Moore line up against some of the best local riders. They were in town for Volcom’s event ‘Boardstock’. Aussie talent included Odd Folk shredders Ryan Tiene and Jye Kearney. They were good enough to pick up 2nd and 3rd respectively in the open mens race. The crown went to Terje in the end of course. Showing that “The Cat”, one of the greatest snowboarders to ever strap in, is still a boss on the board. Terje hadn’t been snowboarding in Oz since the nineties. Hopefully this great event will lure him back to defend his title next year.

Aint no cruising for this pack

Mark Cowley, who donned a “Bathurst 1000” style fire retardant race suit, took out the Men’s Masters event. Super star word champ in the making, Valentino Guseli took out the Grom’s event. His time was just off the open men’s podium pace with a 00:48:27sec run. Josh Vagne took out the Jr race.

Veteran TBS campaigner, Wiki Jones took out another title in the Open Women’s event with a very impressive time of 54:57sec. The smallest rider on the course, Chelsea Kelley was very impressive through her two runs. The mini me shredder took out the Girls Grom race and beat the much bigger competition with speed and style. One to watch out for on the local scene. The Women’s Masters was taken out by Kellie Meehan and the Jr title went to Josie Baff.

Mini shred Chelsea Kelly takes the podium in the Grom
Mini shred Chelsea Kelly takes the podium in the Grom’s race

After the racing fun wound down, competitors and spectators took the party down to the bistro deck to celebrate the rest of the sunny afternoon with a few well earned drinks. Podium ceremonies followed with winners taking home the first traditional “Winners White Jackets” given out in the comp’s history. Also on offer was a merch bag full of goodies. Most notably a “Where’s Wally” inspired red and white striped jersey for all.

For all that lined up on the starters grid and everyone involved – the event was another testament to the spirit, joy and mateship of snowboarding in Oz, well done! Make sure to get involved next year and it can be even greater

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