St. George Utah, April 2001

Photos by Arlene Cline

The IGSA staged it's first ever "World Cup" points event for Buttboards. The points series continues with races staged around the world. "World Cup" events feature the maximum points level while "Regional" races feature the fewest. Each competitior counts their top 4 points finishes during the calendar year and a 2001 World Ranking is established.

The race field was 19 strong and featured the top 3 finishers from last year's World Championship in Austria. This sets a new record for attendance for a race hosted in the USA.

Many competitors had arrived in Utah to compete in the Street Luge X Games "Last Chance Qualifier" . The weather was hot but nice with moderately heavy winds in the evening. The hill features a steep grade with an off camber sweeping right followed by a very challenging left turn. Braking was required.

Dave Rogers had a blistering qualifying run which would have placed him as a top 10 qualifier for Street Luge. Comparing the two related events, riders noted less fear of injury and little pressure to perform.. Everyone who raced in both noted how much more fun thay had Buttboarding that day.

To preserve an even 16 man grid, qualifiers 17-19 raced in their own heat to determine points placement. This also gave them a chance to compete against riders of a similar speed and skill. Earle "The Squirrel" Ross took a break from Gravity Bike racing to defeat Placerville's Keith Harris and In-line Champion Scott Peer.

The semi finalists demonstrated a variety of rides. Roomates Tom Mason and Gerhard Lanz demonstrated opposite approaches. Tom rode aWizard board beautifully painted by Jason Johnson. Gerhard was horrified by its garrish lack of traditionalism and selected a Sector 9 "pin tail." Luckily the two 'roomies' settled their differences over a post shower towel fight, or something like that.

For the semis, dedicated buttboarders Jeremy Gilder and Mark Johnson faced almost certain defeat against Gerhard and Bob Ozman. However skill and patience paid off. The two "underdogs" held in drafting position through the hard turns and into the final straight. Then Gerhard and Bob started jealously bumping and grappling over who would be first across the finish. Whoosh! Jeremy and Mark flew past, advancing into their first ever finals!

The other semi was not equally without upset. Top ranked Dave Rogers and Darren Lott qualified 4 seconds ahead of Tom Mason and Pete Eliot. However, Tom had a nefarious plan!

From the start, Tom leaned hard against Darren, pushing him into Dave, who was trapped against the haybales. Even to starter Neil Orta, Tom's plan was instantly obvious. Use Darren to force Dave to crash. Then ride to vicory and wait for the DQ and fights between the two top guys.

Fortunately for Dave, Darren would have no part of the plan and spent his time blocking for Dave and shoving Tom out in front by himself. Dave rode to victory but Tom still took the transfer slot.

The finals featured Dave,Tom and the incredulous Mark and Jeremy. Tom hung onto Dave all the way down, hoping to draft to a medal. But Mark and Jeremy again used excellent judgment and pulled a double split pass around Tom in the final straight. Mark won his first ever Silver Medal, and Jeremy took his first Bronze!

Two new dedicated Buttboarders break into the rank of Legends!

1. Dave Rogers 
2. Mark Johnson
3. Jeremy Gilder 
4. Tom Mason

5. Darren Lott
6. Gerhard Lanz
7. Bob Ozman
8. Pete Eliot

9. Dave Auld
10. Chris Chaput 
11. Mike Houston
12. Rusty Riley
13. Jason Johnson
14. David Fielden
15. Pat Moody 
16. Chris McBride

17. Earle Ross
18. Keith Harris 
19. Scott Peer

Darren Lott ©2001