Local snowboard-cross racers Tommy and Mitch Pitman will bust through the starting gates looking for a good result in the continuing series of NorAm races that visits Kelowna’s Big White ski resort this weekend.
The Warfield twins look to improve on a decent but disappointing showing in their first race at Copper Valley, Co., last week.
Tommy finished 19th on Sunday while Mitch placed 26th in the heats but due to excessive snow and power failures, the final cut was chopped to the top 16 rather than the top 32 which left both brothers on the outside looking in.
Tom and Mitch are hoping for better results closer to home, at Big White, in what is their second NorAm race of the season and the first snowboard-cross event on the Canada-Snowboard Tour.
“We are working hard to get them to improve on their competitive results and hopefully get the opportunity to qualify for their first World Cup start this season as well as get the opportunity to compete for Canada at the Junior World Championships in Spain later in the winter,” said coach Chris Nakonechny.
The twins are training with Team B.C. again this year but were named to the National Development Group, which gives them an opportunity to train with Canada’s elite.
“The Pitman brothers are doing great this year,” added Nakonechny. “This summer we had the opportunity to train alongside the National Team in Austria and Powder King which was a great set up to the competitive season. With the opportunity to ride alongside some of the top riders in the world it was a huge step for them.”
Depending on their results, the 18-year-old brothers can qualify for the two Canadian sponsored World Cups, one at Blue Mt., Ont. on Feb. 7 and the other in Stoneham, Que., Feb. 20.
“We are hoping for good results this weekend in Big White they are quite comfortable racing here and I think that will help them achieve some great results. Every race is a step forward for them towards their goal of making the National Team,” said Nakonechny.
The Pitman’s mom, Valerie, has also created a cookbook for simple healthy cooking while traveling. She will be on hand at Ferraro Foods on Feb. 3-4 for a fundraiser.