Outdoor: Did you hear?…

CPSC recall of Flow snowboard bindings, BCM announces Summit for Someone benefit climbs, HighGear signs sponsorship of ski racer and Olympian, and much more...
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For the week of Jan. 11-17

>> On Jan. 13, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recalled Flow International's 2004 Flow MK Series Snowboard Bindings. The company is voluntarily cooperating with the recall of about 6,000 units, which were sold in snowboard shops nationwide including Gart Sports/The Sports Authority and REI from July 2004 through December 2004. The cause of the recall is the pin used to secure the rear snaplock lever to the bindings can bend or break. Flow International has received 40 reports of the pins bending or breaking, but no injuries have been reported. The recall includes 2004 Flow MK series snowboard bindings with model numbers MK03, MK04, MK05 and MK110, which can be identified by the shape of the rear lock lever and the cable adjustment wheel on the side of the baseplate. No other bindings are included in this recall. Consumers should stop using the bindings and return them to a Flow dealer to receive a free replacement axle pin. Consumers also can contact Flow International to have a repair kit with instructions sent by mail. For more information, contact Flow International at 800-691-7611 or visit www.flow.com. To view the recall, click here.

>> Trak Sports USA has turned to filmmaker and marketing consultant Josh Murphy to further promote and grow the telemark side of its Karhu brand. SNEWS® View: We know, sounding off on a simple announcement promoting a new hire? Normally, not a big deal, but we really couldn't let the hyperbole of Karhu's press release go unmentioned when it stated that Murphy "coined the term 'Freeheel' skiing." That's news to us. Paul Parker first penned what is still considered one of the definitive works on telemark skiing in 1988 titled, "Free-Heel Skiing…," published by The Mountaineers Books -- now in its third edition. Prior to that, we know of at least one reference to the term "freeheel" in Off Belay magazine in early 1979. Who really cares who coined the term anyway?

>> Troy Ballard, formerly of Salomon and then Rip Curl, has joined Icebreaker, the New Zealand-based manufacturer of pure merino nature clothing, as the company's U.S. market manager, heading up sales and marketing. Icebreaker is currently distributed to over 800 stores in 15 countries throughout Europe, Asia, Australasia and North America.

>> Big City Mountaineers (BCM), is following up on the success of the non-profit's Mt. Shasta benefit climb in 2004 with a Summit for Someone Benefit Climb series. Five benefit climbs will take place in 2005 on Mt. Shasta, Mt. Whitney, Mt. Hood, Mt. Rainier and Mt. Olympus. Each climb will be led by an AMGA-accredited guide service as well as an editor from Backpacker magazine. Participants agree to contribute/raise $2,500, which will fully underwrite a one-week recreational mentoring trip for five at-risk, urban teens through the BCM program. Each Summit for Someone participant will receive over $1,700 worth of gear, including a backpack, sleeping bag and pad, tent, insulated jacket, shell jacket, shell pants, boots, approach shoes, helmet, headlamp, sunglasses, altimeter, trekking poles, socks, gloves, gaiters, base layer top and bottom, sleeping pad chair conversion kit, sunscreen and T-shirts -- all donated by BCM supporting companies. Sponsors include: Big Agnes, Go Trek & Expeditions, GoLite, Gregory, Highgear USA, JanSport, Kelty, Leki, Montrail, Moonstone, MountainSmith, Optic Nerve, Outdoor Research, Patagonia, Petzl, Princeton Tec, Protech, Rainier Mountaineering, Shasta Mountain Guides, Sierra Mountaineering International, Therm-a-Rest, Thorlos, and Timberland. For more information, go to www.summitforsomeone.org.

>> HighGear has signed a multi-year sponsorship deal with Julia Mancuso, a 2002 Olympian and one of the top racers on the U.S women's alpine team. HighGear is now Mancuso's exclusive headgear sponsor with rights to logo placement on her helmets, hats, and headbands for the remainder of the 2005 season through the 2006 Olympics in Torino, Italy. HighGear’s logo will be featured on Mancuso’s helmet/headgear at all 05-06 World Cup events, the 2005 World Championships along with U.S. Championships and other sanctioned ski competitions.

>> The winner of the men's racing division of the Arc'teryx Randonnee Rally at Whistler/Blackcomb, the first event in the Mountain Hardwear/ Life-Link-Dynafit Randonnee Rally Race Series, was Greg Hill of Revelstoke, Canada. The winner for the third year in a row, Hill finished the race in one hour, 39 minutes and 49 seconds. Racing on the Atomic/Patagonia team, Jeannie Wall of Bozeman, Mont., won the women's racing division in one hour, 56 minutes and 51 seconds. This is the second year in a row Wall has won. Sanctioned by the U.S. Ski Mountaineering Association, series sponsors include Mountain Hardwear, Life-Link/Dynafit, Marmot, Outdoor Research, Arc'Teryx, Petzl, Ibex, Suunto, Couloir Magazine, Backcountry Magazine, Off Piste Magazine, Buff Headwear, Clif Bar, Adventure Medical Kits, Crazy Creek, Honey Stinger, Croakies and the Escape Route. For a full list of results, visit www.life-link.com.

>> Hind was named Fleet Feet retailer's "Apparel Vendor of the Year" for the second time in three years at Fleet Feet's 2005 Regional Apparel Conference in Durham, N.C. First presented to Hind in 2002, the award recognizes an apparel vendor for its overall contribution to the growth and success of Fleet Feet's apparel business over the past year. The conference brought together Fleet Feet franchisees from the eastern United States with the industry’s leading running apparel manufacturers. The annual meeting provided a venue for regional store owners and manufacturers to discuss apparel business challenges and opportunities, as well as view new products and finalize merchandise plans for the 2005 fall and winter seasons.

>> Starting with the February 2005 issue of Outside magazine, Grant Davis and Dianna Delling have both been promoted to senior editor and John Bradley is now Associate Editor. Davis manages the Bodywork fitness section, Outside's style and fashion coverage, and contributes to the Dispatches and Review sections. Delling handles Outside's Letters column, book reviews, media coverage, and edits stories in the features section of the magazine. Bradley works on the Dispatches team, and contributes to Outside's Review column and Buyer's Guide issue.

>> The National Ski Patrol (NSP) has hired Bill Spialek as the education director for the
organization, handling development, management and supervision of its educational programs.
He'll serve as an educational resource for NSP members and divisions, while also acting as liaison with industry partners, regulatory agencies and other organizations. The 65-year-old NSP is a federally chartered non-profit membership association dedicated to serving the public and the mountain recreation industry by providing education services about emergency care and safety.

>> Crocs Footwear has promoted Ron Snyder to CEO and named Caryn Ellison as its CFO. Crocs founder George Boedecker will remain on the directors' board.

>> New Balance has promoted Fran Allen to executive vice president of U.S. and Canada sales, and Joe Preston to vice president of international sales. Allen joined New Balance in 1991 as vice president U.S. and Canada sales, and recently took sales responsibilities for team sports and licensed products at New Balance as well as oversight of the company's factory outlet division. In his new role, Preston will manage all aspects of the company's international business including Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Also, Ed Haddad, previously area vice president of international sales, will become vice president of intellectual properties and licensed products, administering licensed contracts and monitoring web content compliance.

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