We’re super stoked for the last major seasonaire event of the season: Any Given Wednesday – The World Monoski Championships and Village Fete pub crawl which are celebrating their 9th anniversary this year!!
STORY BY: Kenny Jesus
WHAT If you don’t know what monoskiing is then you’ve been missing out on life but we’ll explain more at the end of this article. What you need to know for now is that the WMC’s are your best chance at becoming a world champion and finally making your parents proud of you. There are separate categories for men and women who will each compete in a head-to-head single elimination slalom to determine the world champ. Most people who compete have never been on a monoski before (they are provided on the day) and lots of people surprise themselves with how good (or how bad) they are at it. On Any Given Wednesday, anyone can win or lose. The winners, however, walk away with butt-loads of prizes from Planks as well as eternal glory. Seriously, your name will be inscribed on the MWC trophy which is, and will be, proudly displayed in the Blue Note year-round until amageddon.
After the races it’s the Village Fete pub crawl where you’ll go bar-to-bar to play stupid games and win boozy prizes. You’re pretty much guaranteed to get 8 free drinks and have a fucking rad time.
WHO Anybody! Tickets are being sold for entry to the race and/or pub crawl but you don’t need a ticket to rock some 80’s gear and spend a day with your mates watching it all go down.
WHERE MWC’s in the Val Park. Awards begin straight afterwards in the Blue Note, then it’s off on the Village Fete!
WHEN This Wednesday April 19th! Sign-up begins at 10:30am, races start at 11:30pm. The awards start around 5:30pm.
WHY Because the 80’s and early 90’s were rad and it’s a sweet excuse to have a party. Also all the proceeds go to the shaper team from the snowpark who use them to throw a wicked end-of-season BBQ for the mountain staff that keep our playground running, namely the Pisteurs and the lift crew.
HOW If you want to get involved in the race of the pub crawl you’ll need a ticket. They’re €10 a piece and give you use of a monoski, entry to the MWC’s (limited to the first 80 to sign up on the day) as well as entry to the Village Fete pub crawl. Tickets are on sale now at Blue Note and Fall Line. If there are any left on the day they’ll be on sale in the park as well.
A recent article in The Telegraph asked the question “Is Monoskiing Cool Again?”. The answer to that is an emphatic ‘no’. Monoskiing is not cool again, because monoskiing never stopped being cool in the first place.
A monoski is a majestic wide ski with bindings mounted side-by-side. Originally invented in the 1950’s it was popularised in the 70’s by pro-surfer Mike Doyle, became really popular in France in the 80’s, but was eventually overshadowed by snowboarding (for reasons we can’t quite understand).
Nick Clemons from Monoski UK says: “The first hour on a monoski feels a little strange, particularly if you are used to skiing as you obviously can’t move your feet apart. However, the improvement curve is much greater on a monoski than on skis or a snowboard. Jean-Phillipe Thevenod of Duret Monoskis says that he can get new monoskiers to tackle red runs within a couple of hours. On a monoski you have your feet together and facing forwards as opposed to a snowboard where they are some distance apart and at an angle. This has the advantage of allowing your feet to work together much more easily to do the same thing. As a result it is very easy to turn on a monoski and your ski poles help you to switch your balance easier when turning at faster speeds.”
If anyone reading this wants to get a bit of practice in before the day you can borrow a monoski free of charge provided you bring it up to the park on the day. If you don’t have any suitable kit I’ve got way too many onesies and gnarly 80s jackets kicking around our offices which we’re happy to get rid of for next to nothing. Either PM us on Facebook or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org to pick up a mono or an outfit this weekend.
If you want to see some kick-ass monoski footage to get you amped then check out a clip from 1983’s Apocalypse Snow, filmed in Les Arcs (search Apocalypse Snow 1983 on YouTube and watch the 5 minute 14 second supercut). It’s the best friggin’ thing you’ll have seen all year even if the scene where the monoskiers chase snowboard pioneer Regis Rolland is, in retrospect, a sad foreshadowing of the present.