Malay Day returns to Vail for third year
VAIL – For the third year in a row, crowds will gather Friday at Golden Peak to celebrate Malay Day.This year, however, organizers hope that people won’t have to wait until the next Malay Day to ride a rail in memory of Josh Malay, a local pro rider who died in a snowboarding accident in February 2004.”The proceeds from this year will go towards building a rail in Josh’s honor at Vail,” said event organizer Liz Weiss. “We want something even more permanent on Vail that will be a reminder of Josh.”And much like Malay would have wanted, the format of Malay day will be just like years past.”We talked about making it a little more structured, because we have such a big turnout, but that would make it a bit more serious and make for less freedom of expression,” Weiss said.Steven Laterra, one of Malay’s good friends and the Vail terrain park designer, is excited to be a part of the event again.
“It’s all about having fun and a good time and people throwing down some rad stuff out there,” Laterra said. “Everyone is really happy, remembering good things about our fallen friend, and keeping the dream alive.”And he’s doing his best to make sure that happens. “I built this year’s (course) with Josh in mind because he’d be destroying it,” Laterra said.Calling all ridersMalay Day features three competitions, open to all amateur male and female riders and skiers. The pipe jam kicks off at 11 a.m. and goes until noon.A rail jam and big jump contest follow the pipe jam.
Registration is $15 and will be at the Golden Peak lodge starting at 9 a.m. All participants receive a T-shirt and will be eligible for prizes throughout the contests. Anyone under 18 years old must have a parent to register.The overall men’s and women’s destroyer will win a free season pass to Vail for next year.For the rail jam, riders will have plenty of opportunities to pull gnarly tricks with a 40-foot street-style down rail that goes into a 22-foot flat bar rail and finishes with an 8-foot wall ride that sits on top of 8 feet of snow.And there will be plenty of airtime available for the big jump contest, as Laterra built a 40-foot channel gap jump.The cast
Judging the event will be a “Ninja” Jay Isaacs, Malay’s former manager, Pat Franzen, Nick Drago, Greg Johnson, Rachel Nelson and Rob Bok.To accompany the food and beers will be music provided by DJs Majai and Opie.And of course, Malay’s mother, Pat, will be in attendance.Sports Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 14631, or firstname.lastname@example.org.Vail, Colorado