By Jacques Blais, Portfolio Lead, Translation (

On January 27 and 28 Val Saint-Côme, in Lanaudière Zone in Quebec held an FIS Moguls World Cup on the most brightly lit mogul run in the world. All the top women and men athletes of the discipline were present. It was a spectacular event.

The Alexandre Bilodeau run at Val Saint-Côme was already known as one of the steepest and, according to FIS officials, it now has the reputation of being the best lit run in the world. There is a saying in Lanaudière: “Astronauts see two manmade structures without instruments from the space station: the Great Wall of China and the Alexandre Bilodeau run at night.”

Lanaudière Zone members were present at the hill for all the competitions with patrollers taking turns covering the event. As you can imagine, patrollers were not that busy, as the athletes are world calibre. It was a time when patrollers could largely simply enjoy the event from close by, watching the likes of Mikaël Kingsbury manage the two jumps and the numerous moguls down the steep run.

The Alexandre Bilodeau run at Val Saint-Côme (from the base) (Photo from the FIS website)

Having patrollers around, CSP patrollers in this case, is necessary. It is requirement of the FIS. At events like this you need to be prepared. On the event days, and during practices the days before, from the very first moment athletes showed up at the run, to the end of the competition, two patrollers stood guard at the first jump equipped with toboggan and backboard, while another pair stood guard at the bottom with a snow vehicle ready for extraction. More patrollers remained on standby with more equipment at the top of the hill.

One of the main requirements for such events is that nothing can slow down the competition. So, if a patroller must assist an athlete on the run and leaves the post at the first jump, another one is immediately dispatched in replacement so that two patrollers are always on guard. If the first patroller requires assistance and equipment, the two patrollers now on guard bring down the required equipment and come to the aid of the first patrollers.

The patrol leader, listening to the radio call, immediately dispatches a new pair of patrollers with replacement equipment back to the post at the first jump. No time is wasted in this well-orchestrated ballet.

Thankfully, patrollers were not often called, and incidents were simple in nature. However, by being so close to the run, patrollers revelled in the delight of seeing their favourite, Mikaël Kingsbury, win the cup in solo and almost win the cup in parallel races.

Thank you Val Saint-Côme for staging this marvellous event with world class!

Mikaël Kingsbury in action at Val Saint-Côme Photo from the Canadian Olympic Committee website)
The best world athletes compete at the most brightly lit mogul run in the world