Snowboarder Emily Weer of Soda Springs captured first place in the Flow Freeride World Championships last week in Valdez, Alaska, while Sammy Luebke of Squaw Valley was second in the men’s field.Top snowboarders from all over the world competed in the big-mountain event, which was held on the backside of Valdez’s famous Python peak. Weer won the two-run qualifier and the competitor-judged final, which was done by video, to earn the title of Queen of the Hill and win a coveted three-foot-tall sword. Despite dangerous exposure, Weer landed all six of her cliff drops without a problem.Luebke, who went on to win The North Face Masters of Snowboarding title in Utah days later, put together a solid run to contend for the winner’s sword. But he ended up settling for second. Other Tahoe competitors included legendary snowboarder Mike Basich, Justin Befu, Will Brommelsiek and Brian Bozack.The Flow Freeride World Championships was not the only extreme Alaska event in which Tahoe athletes performed well. Last Thursday, Olympic alpine skier Marco Sullivan and snowboard-cross racer Nate Holland, both of Squaw Valley, won their respective divisions in the Arctic Man Classic. In addition, snowboard-cross racer Jayson Hale of Sugar Bowl was second in the men’s snowboard division and Pat Holland was third.Each was teamed up with a snowmobile driver, as the speed-intensive race requires a team of a snowmobiler and skier/snowboarder doing multiple drop-off and pick-up zones over a 5-mile course.
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