Teva Mountain Games

How a D-list paddling contest became one of the biggest competitions in mountain sports.

Teva Mountain Games     Photo: Courtesy of Toni Axelrod/Vail Valley Foundation

1990
The Vail Memorial Day whitewater festival, a slalom kayaking contest on the Eagle River, debuts.

2002
Mountain biking, trail running, and climbing are added; the event is rechristened the Teva Mountain Games.

2003
The second annual Teva Mountain Ball, with attendees wearing tuxes and Tevas but not with socks.

2004
Jurassic 5 headlines the games, setting the stage for future college acts like Nappy Roots, the Samples, and Ozomatli.

2005
The ever-popular Mud Run debuts.

2006
Colorado native Matt Carpenter finishes first in the USA Track and Field 10K Trail Championships, at TMG, but doesn't "win" thanks to a technicality he wasn'ta USATF member.

2007
Less than a year after his Tour de France victory, an out-of-shape Floyd Landis finishes 36th in the Mountain Bike Championship.

2008
Wisconsin native Alex Johnson stuns the European women with a surprise win in the Bouldering World Cup, the first on U.S. soil in 20 years.

2009
An endless introduction of niche disciplines continues with the Vail Pass Half Marathon, which finishes at 10,000 feet above sea level.

2010
More than 40,000 spectators are expected to attend 24 events, with athletes gunning for $100,000 in prize money which, if history is any indicator, one kayaker will use to cover bail.

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