Deer Valley ready for World Cup | ParkRecord.com

Deer Valley ready for World Cup

With top-notch snowmaking capabilities on the White Owl and Champion ski runs at Deer Valley Resort, the resort wasn’t too worried about the lack of natural snow in Park City leading up to the Deer Valley FIS Freestyle World Cup event scheduled for Jan. 7-10.

But the recent storms were certainly welcomed by all those involved in preparing the courses for the world-class competitors.

Deer Valley Communications Manager Emily Summers said real snow makes things go more smoothly.

"Luckily, all this snow showed up just in time," she said. "Natural snow just makes everything easier on everyone. Man-made snow is our insurance policy."

Snowmaking was going full force prior to the weekend storms, though, and provided more than enough coverage to keep preparations on track.

"Snowmaking on both venues is complete," Summers said. "We’ll start doing course construction this week. Volunteers have been on-site for at least a week. We’re underway on the same timeline as last year."

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On the competition side of things, Summers said the resort is expecting another excellent athlete turnout, albeit slightly calmer in a post-Olympic year.

"Last year was an Olympic qualifier," she said. "So this year will be a little smaller than last year."

But, with Olympic spots not on the line, Summers said there’s a chance to bring back a fan-favorite competition.

"Last year, we didn’t have dual moguls and that seems to be a spectator favorite," she said. "That’s back on Saturday night this year."

The only other major change from last year’s competition is that aerials will be the first competition, on Thursday night. Last year, two moguls events sandwiched the aerials competition.

"We’re moving it to Thursday this year because [the aerialists] have to head out for their next competition on Friday," Summers said.

Olympic aerialists Mac Bohonnon and Ashley Caldwell are expected to compete, as are Olympic mogul skiers Hannah Kearney, Patrick Deneen and Bryon Wilson.

Last year, Canadian men dominated the two mogul events, taking five of the six podium spots. Belarusian men took charge at the one aerials event, winning first and third place.

On the women’s side, Team USA was able to capture a couple mogul victories, both courtesy of Hannah Kearney, who eventually won the overall World Cup moguls title at the end of the season. The big story of the aerials competition was the Chinese women’s team, which captured all three podium spots in impressive fashion.

In addition to having fireworks after each competition wraps up over the weekend, Wednesday night will feature the opening ceremony, concert and even more fireworks on Main Street to get everything started. Beginning at 7 p.m., the evening’s festivities will continue until approximately 10 p.m.

"The opening act is Chris Robinson of the Black Crowes," Summers said. "So that Wednesday night show should be great."

Admission to all the week’s events is free to the public. Qualifications for each event will take place prior to the finals. For more information about the Deer Valley World Cup, visit http://www.deervalley.com .

Deer Valley World Cup Schedule

Wednesday, Jan. 7

7-10 p.m. — Opening Ceremony and concert — Lower Main Street

10 p.m. — Fireworks — Lower Main Street

Thursday, Jan. 8

8-8:50 p.m. — Men’s and women’s aerial finals — White Owl

9 p.m. — Awards — White Owl

9:10 p.m. — Fireworks — Competition venue

Friday, Jan. 9

7-8 p.m. — Men’s and women’s mogul finals — Champion

8:10 p.m. — Awards — Champion

8:30 p.m. — Fireworks — Competition venue

Saturday, Jan. 10

7-8:20 p.m. — Men’s and women’s dual mogul finals — Champion

8:25 p.m. — Awards — Champion

8:40 p.m. — Fireworks — Competition venue