Raceboarding- those guys with super narrow snowboards, their hard boots pointed almost straight forward. It’s not about big air, baggy jackets, or halfpipes. No, carving boards are meant for one thing: high speed turns on steep slopes, building up nice G-forces while leaving a deep groove in the snow. Even so, the competition between these riders is just as fierce as it is between regular snowboarders. Events can still be as tense as a professional game of party poker, with raceboarders keen to perfect their carving skills. With the right technique, the rider’s shoulder is almost on the ground with every turn. For safety, carvers slide one or both hands against the snow during deep turns. That way if the board loses grip, one arm is in the right place to stop the fall (instead of landing hard on the face or a shoulder).
One of Germany’s largest carving snowboard forums is called Frozen Backside, and a lot of FB members meet at Soelden each year for Carving Masters – a fun weekend of courses, mini-competitions, and testing out suppliers’ newest gear. Here are a few raceboarders carving up the glaciers in May 2010!