No raining on their rail jam parade

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Top skiers and riders endured torrential rain to bust out tricks at the tenth Queenstown Parklife Invitational. 

The annual rail jam saw 40 snowsports stars from around the world compete in front of a 2000-strong crowd. 

But a planned motocross demonstration – which would have seen Kiwi Nick Franklin and Aussies Matty Lewis and Brenton Drager perform airborne tricks on their bikes over the rail structure – was cancelled because the wet ramps were deemed too dangerous to use. 

The invitational was held for the first time at Queenstown Recreation Ground rather than Earnslaw Park, allowing for 3000 more people. But heavy rain during the six-hour event kept many spectators away. 

Co-organiser Ross Lawrence, The Remarkables ski area manager, says: “Even though the weather wasn’t in our favour, the night was still a great success. We can’t wait to bring it all together again next year.”  

And the winners are …
Best male snowboarder: Californian Eric Beauchemin ($1800 prize).
Best female snowboarder: Ireland’s Orla Doolin ($600).
Best male freeskier: Colorado’s Gus Kenworthy ($1500) – showed why he’s the world’s best freeskier with spins into and off both rails. It’s the third time Kenworthy has won best male freeskier.
Best female skier: The Netherland’s Isabelle Hanssen ($400).
Best trick: New York’s Will Wesson ($500) – popped a blind three swap on the down flat down rail.
Best slam: Marlin Largerstedt ($200) – for spectacularly hitting the deck.