The "TENJIN BANKED SLALOM 2023”.In this article, we look back on this tournament with comments from tournament producer Daizo Fukushima.
Hard weather and course conditions on the first day
On the first day of the race, it was colder than expected, making the course crisp and icy.In addition, speed control in the second half of the bank is crucial, making it a hardcore course typical of Tenjin.Under these conditions, the organizers decided to focus on the course inspection on the first day, with only the open men's and master's men's preliminaries going on.Tournament producer Taizo Fukushima looks back on the day's decision.
“This year, the course was quite difficult and the conditions on the day of the event, so we had to make a sudden change to the schedule. In addition, since there were many entries for the open men's event, we decided to proceed with the qualifying as much as possible within the limited time remaining. In the afternoon, the weather was bad and it took a long time, so in the end we only had two classes, the open men's and the master's men's, qualifying, and the other classes had a one-off match the next day.”
What is the course concept for this tournament?
This year marked the 13th "TENJIN BANKED SLALOM”.Various courses have been built in the past, but I continued to ask about this year's course concept.
“From the stage of building the course, we all completed one bank and then proceeded to the next bank. In the case of Tenjin Banked, I really wanted to drop the front so that everyone could see everyone skating from the tent area below. At first, I took a completely different line and extended the traverse to the other side of the big rock.There was also a plan to use the terrain on that side to drop down.However, when I came down from the completed course from above, " We started talking about a new line, like, “Oh, can’t we go here like this? That way it will connect to the bottom.” So we all skied and checked, and as a result, we came up with that line. In the end, the vertical lines were stronger than we had hoped, resulting in a high-speed course. In the second half of the bank where I struggled, it became difficult to make regular two-side turns... The guys who were good at it were able to check it at the right time and then feel good about it, but if the check was not done well, it would be a difficult course. I'm sorry. That's a point that we are also reflecting on."
The course of this year's tournament was tough
About a week in advance, about 20 diggers will start skating and sharing their opinions to create a course.TENJIN BANKED SLALOM”.This course is built through trial and error every year, but this time it seemed to be particularly difficult.
“Actually, after Saturday ended, I fixed quite a few places. Regarding the bank in the second half, I changed it a lot more than the first day. I used a snow compactor to fix it.It made it a lot smoother than the first day, but it was still difficult in the second half at high speed, and I needed skier technique.However, even among them, the top players skied well. I think it was worth it because it came."
Listening to the behind-the-scenes story of creating a banked course like this, you can feel how difficult it is to run this tournament.Course conditions that change depending on the weather, and how you can ski comfortably while adjusting your speed from top to bottom on the course.The course is completed and the competition is progressed by the ideas and construction techniques of such builders.Although there were various problems in this tournament, we were blessed with fine weather on the second day, and we were able to skate one by one without any problems, and we were able to perform the super final.Mr. Daizo Fukushima ended the tournament with this.
“At the end of the day, so many people surrounded the finish line to watch the participants skating, and everyone in each class enjoyed skating. Thank you very much for this tournament.”
TENJIN BANKED SLALOM 2023 results here