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The contestants will perform freestyle tricks whilst skiing or snowboarding.

University of Exeter Forum to become giant ski slope for South West snowsports contest

More than 48 tonnes of real snow are to be delivered by lorry to the University’s Streatham Campus and dumped outside the Forum to create a giant ski slope this Saturday (21 January).

The spectacular transformation of Forum Hill is being organised for a regional snow sports competition which will see 30 skiers and snowboarders from six universities from the South West region perform freestyle tricks.

Rails and boxes will be placed at various points down the slope (or Chill Hill) in what is known as a rail jam. This will allow the contestants to perform various tricks whilst descending, ensuring entertaining performances.

Skiers and snowboarders from the University of Exeter will compete against the Universities of Bristol, Southampton, Plymouth, Portsmouth and the University of West England. The contestants are all experienced riders and have taken part in various competitive events in the past, with many contending in the BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) snowsports competition.

Lauren Fry, president of the Athletic Union’s Snowsports Club, which is organising the event, said: “After a year of planning hopefully all of our hard work will pay off and everyone will see just why we love this sport so much. I’m very excited we are hosting such an iconic event.”

Four judges will determine the winners, based on which of the participants demonstrated the most impressive display and prizes will include top-of-the-range equipment.

The club organised this event, called ‘Chill Hill’, to encourage more students to get involved in snow sports. In doing so they also intend to raise money for Disability Snowsport UK, a charity which helps disabled people ski and snowboard, either independently or assisted.

Keira Young, a fundraising manager for the charity said: “Disability Snowsport UK are super excited to have been chosen as the charity for the ‘Chill Hill’ event at the University of Exeter. It’s great to see the university supporting our work and wanting to help disabled people have the access to snowsport and the mountains which we all get the same enjoyment from.

"We would like to thank the team for making the event happen and wish them a successful day and hope they raise lots of money and are able to spread the word of the work Disability Snowsport UK do throughout the UK.”

Sponsors NUCO, Boardbasement, Two-seasons and Redbull are attending the event. The Redbull DJ truck will provide music and a lively atmosphere and plenty of ‘mountain-style foods’, including snow cones and crepes, will be available. Free goody bags from sponsors will also be available for spectators.

The event will cost each of the anticipated 800 attendees only £1 and a proportion of the ticket sales will be donated to the Disability Snowsports UK charity. Collection boxes will also be found at the event, and a tilt link is now live for those who wish to donate larger sums of money.

Katherine Hellier, vice-president of the Snowsports Club and second year French, Spanish and International Relations student said: “We have worked so hard on this event, and I am really pleased it is finally here!

“Whether you are a snowsports pro, amateur, or even if you have never been skiing or snowboarding before, this event promises to be a really fun day with a great atmosphere.”

Date: 18 January 2017