HARDISTY, Alberta – The Western Canadian 2014 Winter Oilympics, officially the 1st Winter Oilympics, is a major multi-sport event being held in the bustling metropolis known as Hardisty, Alberta. The Oilympic Park officially opened its doors today and visitors are pouring in from as far away as Virden, Manitoba. Many are heading to Bendovus Energy Field to see the service companies compete in the ever popular Polar Rig Move Relay event.
Oh man, we just got here from Fort St. John, BC and we are pumped. I could hardly contain myself on the bus ride down. Although I don’t participate in these events, oil and gas runs deep in my blood and I’m looking forward to seeing BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba compete against each other in what me and my friends calls the most exciting competition on the planet. I can’t wait to see my old man compete in the Tubing Toss – Susan Hoodboozer, huge Oilympics fan
The inaugural 10-day event, sponsored by 2P News, is set to kick off after the opening ceremony that is scheduled to run at noon today, through the street of Hardisty on a 3-flatbed parade. The ceremony will include a live performance by Brute Stack & The Reflections, a popular retro cover band formed by a number of geophysics professionals. Rumour has it that the band will play its hit song, “Geophysical.”
The event pits the 4 Western provinces against each other chasing Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals in a number of oilfield related, winterish sporting events. Although there are 30 plus events in the registry, some of which closely resemble actual sports, there are a few notable and curious events we here at 2P News are proud to sponsor:
- The Hungry Hungry Landman – This event focuses on the speed and ingenuity of landmen across the cold provinces. Dressed in nothing but Speedos or bikinis, landmen are pitted against each other in a race of speed and precision while running nearly nude through the snow to literally “grab” land titles and mineral rights, which are scattered around the play area by referees prior to the starting bell.
- The Tool Toss – Much like the Highland Games Caber toss, this event requires the strongest of oilfield workers to attempt to pitch MWD tool strings as far as possible. To add a winter spin on this, the regulation pitching zone will be iced with a hose to simulate workers actually working with tools on an icy chunk of rig matting. This event passed all hurdles with WCB after 2P News showed proof of liability coverage to them before the games.
- The Polar Rig Move Relay – Inside the intentionally chilled Bendovus Energy Arena, 3 rig teams compete in a timed event to rack a rig, move it 25m, and then rig up again to spud-ready state. The arena required a special cooling unit to be brought in from Iceland in order to keep the building at -35° Celsius for the duration of the event. Boilers are strictly prohibited indoors, so the teams will have to work 1974 style, with fire boiled hot water and big hammers.
- The Invert Dash – An outdoor winter swimming relay that really closes the gap between summer and winter sports. The swimming relay teams are speed swimming in warmed invert drilling mud, based on a contentious blend of diesel and additives, because it doesn’t freeze. Viscosity will be held around 750kg/m3 to ensure a smooth stroke and not to much energy loss due to fluid flow characteristics.
- The Surveyor Sled Jump – One of the few individual events; a participant jumps a surveyors work sled off the berm of a secondary containment to see who can jump the farthest. Essentially a long jump, there are strict prohibitions on which vehicles can be entered. They typically need to be older passenger models with under 400 cubic inch motors, and an array of stakes and surveying gear strapped to the back of the sled.
- Roughneck Towjob – This event requires teams of 15, and synchronization is key. The teams need to first stand around in the chilled arena for 90 minutes, staying as warm as they can. At the onset of calculated hypothermic conditions, they then have to band together to manually pull a pickup out of a snowdrift where it was buried the night before. They will be supplied with some old rope and possibly a broken shovel.
Tune your Shew Cable box to channel 1423 for full coverage of the Western Canadian 2014 brought to you by 2P Sports, including up-to-the-minute results, schedules, news, videos and photos. 2P News will continue to report on the event throughout its 10-day span.