The Bob Beattie Ski Foundation Donates Dual Racing Gates to Local Program
“The Coach” lives on, through skiing’s most accessible and action-packed format.
For release: April 1, 2019
Contact: Terry Palmer at [email protected]
On the one-year anniversary of Bob Beattie’s passing the Coach would be thrilled to see his vision for more access to skiing is alive and thriving.
“RED COURSE READY …… BLUE COURSE READY!!” …
After those words, side by side metal “horse gates” fling open simultaneously and two ski racers explode onto parallel courses, racing each other down the mountain in fierce, fun, head-to-head, competition. This is ski racing at its most exciting and most accessible, as popularized by the late Bob Beattie in his World Pro Skiing Tour in the 1970’s. Today, one year since Beattie’s passing, the Bob Beattie Ski Foundation (BBSF) furthers his mission to bring ski racing to the people, by providing a local program with the Pro-style start gates that are key to running exciting dual competitions.
THE LOCAL CORE: Cochran’s Ski Area, home of the famous skiing Cochran family and hallowed ground for grass roots, community-based ski programs, was the first recipient of BBSF-commissioned dual start gates, which made their debut at the Cochran’s 1stAnnual Redneck RacingSlalom Showdown on March 10. Racersof all ages and abilities battled each other in head-to-head competition. The fastest skiers, progressing through bracket eliminations, were zippedback to the start on the Cochran’s rope tow while fans watched and cheered the nonstop action.
“Everyday folks were super impressed with how exciting the format was and how fast the pace of the event was,” says second generation Olympian Jimmy Cochran, who oversees operations at Cochran’s.
THE PROVEN FORMAT: The dual format has recently surged in popularity, with a pro racing tour in the US this season and Olympic medal status in 2020. “Head to head courses don’t require big mountains or steep pitches and they are fun to watch, at any level. Even casual observers ‘get it’ at first sight,” explains BBSF president Mike Hundert.
GATEWAY TO OPPORTUNITY: The gatescommissioned for the event were manufactured in Ludlow, Vermont by Pyramid Timing, and are not only durable and reliable, but feature ample room for spectator-facing logos, broadening event sponsorship opportunities.
“We’ve been getting lots of use out of the gates already,” says Cochran, who expects to use the gates extensively, from Cochran’s highly competitive New Year’s Night Slalom and “Thank God For Snowmaking” races, to more low-key community events like the Rope-a-Thon and Friday Night Lights. “The club is just starting to figure out how great they are.”
THE FUTURE OF SKIING: Former Pro and Olympic skier, and BBSF board member, Terry Palmer spearheaded the start gate initiative. He sees the BBSF partnership with Cochran’s as the first step to furthering Beattie’s dream. “Cochran’s has created a community of life-long skiers where the gates and format can live and thrive,” says Palmer. “May the man (Bob Beattie) and his mission live forever!”
Adds Hundert, “We are certain this will encourage more people to race more often, elevating competence in the discipline and growing the sport.”
GET IN THE GATE!
To learn more about helping fulfill Bob Beattie’s mission to support access and affordability, and to help more skiers have more fun, andto learn how BBSF can help your club getreceive Pro-style start gates, go to https://bobbeattie.org/
View photos of the 1st Annual Redneck Racing Slalom Showdown at: https://photos.app.goo.gl/z8zpdDuWVbJLCSXQ9