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Softboot Racing


softbootsurfer
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Interestingly, but I suppose a little off topic, the last Slash and Burn in 2020 featured a good mix of riders from every discipline in the top ten of Open Class. Shrimpy (PGS PSL) was second to Taylor Gold (HP) (by 6/100ths!) and Mick Dierdorff (BX) Bronze.

At the end they have a switch race. All riders throw in $5.00 and winner takes all. You have to ride switch. Taylor won the money. I remember I did the math and his time switch would have been 8th in the regular race!

 

Edited by Dave Winters
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"That's kind of offensive. The talent has to be there. I get it, a kid with talent but no money is out of luck, but, life's not fair. A kid with money and no talent is not going anywhere either."

Your interpretation isn't what I meant.  I meant that while everyone will continue to progress... Those with the funds will continue from a (faster) starting point and flow upwards quicker, while the less monied children will also continue to progress... But not catch up.  

 

You won this one Jack!  We get it!  "Ain't gonna happen"... Message recieved / awknowledged / digested!  This is a "wouldn't it be nice" conversation... Not something meant to change the world or really anything other than our butt-hurt childhood trauma!  Wait.. might be that is just me...

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8 hours ago, west carven said:

why can't a softboot race just be a softboot race?

Nobody is saying that can't exist, and it does in BX and BSL.  I'm just saying USASA, as the pathway to FIS, needs to include hardboots.  And hardbooters are still a tiny minority in USASA anyway.  Most of the time many of the age groups do end up being softboots-only.

 

1 hour ago, Atom Ant said:

Those with the funds will continue from a (faster) starting point and flow upwards quicker, while the less monied children will also continue to progress... But not catch up.

I think that's true whether hardboots are involved or not.  $1500 for a Donek B1.  C'est la vie.

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        The difference between HB and SB is night and day...just as the difference between skis and snowboards...who is in charge, where is the money, what is the reason? the current epitome of Snowboard racing is FIS, they control it...that is the Direction one travels, the destination is set...just a personal observation, based on a belief that if I wanted to Race in the Olympics Now, on a Snowboard, then it would Have to Be, with HB equipment...Gilmore runs Nastar on his SB set up, He is very good at that, he enjoys that, Olympic Dreams however, will require a HB set up...that is not going to change...Racing in SB can be done on any Nastar course, or on any set of Gates...I started this thread thinking that just maybe, offering an FIS approach for SB other than BX could work, Blue B and Jack and others here, believe that if Gates are involved, HB cannot be Banned ?  which is the current FIS approach as well, like saying Motorcycle Racing should not be able to ban Formula 1 cars from their races...that argument does not take into account the vast numbers of people who SB, compared to HB and might want to go to the Olympics without having to change their equipment so drastically...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hey Jack,

Question coming from a truly ignorant place: is your daughter does bumps and jumps (I believe)... Within skiing, is that considered the combination of a few disciplines (racing / moggles and jumps / freestyle)?  We're kind of its own thing?

II think where some of the confusion might be coming from here, is that for pure gate based racing... Hard boot should be used and are absolutely the superior equipment.  For border cross soft boots are absolutely the superior equipment... What doesn't really exist is something in between.  Some might argue Bank Solomon is the in-between, but I would argue it does not combine enough elements of each to count as an in-between- more its own thing.  An event that combines reasonable features of like border cross with a gated section much like giant slalom would effectively nullify, or it's designed properly at least would nullify, the advantages of either set of equipment.  Single Rider format obviously.  

Half baked idea here, please nobody treat this as a dissertation or grand thesis... Just an idea only.  I've always thought something race-based that highlights a broad all-around skill set would be interesting to watch and participate in.

 

Mitch

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8 hours ago, softbootsurfer said:

The difference between HB and SB is night and day...just as the difference between skis and snowboards.

Not quite.  An alpine snowboard is a snowboard.  One must know how to snowboard to ride an alpine snowboard.  If one learns to ride an alpine snowboard with hardboots first, they will be able to switch to a freeride snowboard with softboots and ride it well.  A good softboot carver can try an alpine setup and do quite well on day one.  A skier cannot just put on a snowboard and go ride at a level anywhere near their skiing.  Skis are not snowboards, just like a car is not a motorcycle.  This is why skiers and snowboarders don't compete against each other, they are different skills and different sports.

And anyway, If softbooters really wanted to race gates without hardbooter riff raff, don't you think a softboot-only race series would have been established by now?  Seems like the interest and demand simply isn't there in any significant way.  I also don't think people would enjoy it - imagine dealing with race ruts at full speed on softboots.

If you did somehow establish softboot-only gate racing at the world cup/olympic level, you'd just end up with people modifying their softboots in search of more speed and better carves.  Just like how the Korean softboot carvers are reinforcing their boots with plastic tongues and internal battens and whatnot, running stiff molded liners, and adding lace-up braces over the liners.  3rd straps would come back, unless you banned them.  And then would you put limits on board length?  Because if not, the boards used for GS would get longer and longer until they were probably around 185cm.  There would be plates, if not banned.  So ultimately the hardboot ban would be purely cosmetic, in other words, a joke.  The equipment used in gate racing would bear little resemblance to freeride equipment.  Someone interested in this new "softboot" racing would need to buy a whole other "racing" setup, if they want to be competitive.  And now we're back to square one.

I think what you really want is a "run what ya brung" type beer league.  You're in luck, that already exists.  But if a good hardbooter shows up, you're probably not getting a gold medal.  Oh well.

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1 hour ago, Atom Ant said:

Hey Jack,

Question coming from a truly ignorant place: is your daughter does bumps and jumps (I believe)... Within skiing, is that considered the combination of a few disciplines (racing / moggles and jumps / freestyle)?  We're kind of its own thing?

She does compete in moguls.  I don't think anyone cares to engage in that taxonomy.  Your score in a mogul run is judged 50% on turns and line, 25% on jumps, and then 25% of the score is calculated from your time start to finish.  Race training does not buy you much of anything in moguls.  A racer cannot just hop in a mogul event and be competitive if they aren't already practicing in the moguls.  However mogul skiers can transition to gates pretty quickly and successfully.  That probably doesn't happen after high school though.  I am biased but I would say good mogul skiers are the best all-around skiers.

1 hour ago, Atom Ant said:

What doesn't really exist is something in between.  Some might argue Bank Solomon is the in-between, but I would argue it does not combine enough elements of each to count as an in-between- more its own thing.

I would agree, I've been doing the Sugarloaf Banked Slalom for many years now (10??) and there was only 1 year where I felt hardboots were an advantage.  I do it in hardboots just because I'm better at it in hardboots.  And to be that guy.  BSL is basically single rider BX without jumps.  (don't let that make you think it's easy though!)

1 hour ago, Atom Ant said:

I would argue it does not combine enough elements of each to count as an in-between- more its own thing.  An event that combines reasonable features of like border cross with a gated section much like giant slalom would effectively nullify, or it's designed properly at least would nullify, the advantages of either set of equipment.  Single Rider format obviously. 

That actually existed briefly, but it was more wild than your description.  It was a parallel GS for the first half, and then the two riders funneled in to a BX for the bottom half.  I think it was part of the Jeep King of the Mountain series or something like that.  It was on TV.  I saw Chris Klug beat Jasey Jay in it once.  At least I'm pretty sure it was JJ - I know it was Klug because Picabo Street was the commentator and she looked like she fell in love with Klug in the process.  She just about licked his face in the post interview.  I though the format should be called "Super-Y" for lack of a better term.

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On 7/24/2021 at 8:47 PM, west carven said:

howdy

anyways who gives a two cents whos faster …

super deep carves that goes a little up hill and crank it deep and tight! …

that is carving … 

Why compete in anything?  Why not just step outside your door and time yourself running 26 miles instead of paying to enter a marathon?  I guess I don't understand why someone who doesn't care about racing would post in this thread or even read it.  Some people just want to compete.  If it moves, it will be raced.

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On 7/24/2021 at 6:47 PM, west carven said:

howdy

anyways who gives a two cents whos faster …

Many many people care, which is why we have multiple tiers of racing competition, the Olympics, companies like Kessler who make their reputation and living with racing. If it weren’t for racing I highly doubt we would be enjoying the level of technology we have now that allows us to go fast and carve hard. 

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On 7/24/2021 at 8:47 PM, west carven said:

 

anyways who gives a two cents whos faster …

 

Many do globally. 
Countries bid and compete to even hold the events.
There are NorAMs
There is the Race to the Cup
There is FIS

 

For many, like myself, it is a significant line item in our budgets to support these athletes who's only goal is to be the fastest in the world at their sport.

 

Surly, this must have been hyperbole.....  

 

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