Four locations around the world have been selected for the second edition of the Freeride World Tour. On top of it, qualification events have joined as Freeride World Qualifier events making the Tour even more attractive, with more events and more riders. The planet’s top freeride skiers and snowboarders will start in Sochi with the Nissan Russian Adventure 2009 and then travel to the USA, France and Switzerland to prove their skills on some of the world’s most challenging faces. The Freeride World Tour has a prize purse of $250,000, the highest sum ever to be paid in ski or snowboard freeride contests.
On March 15, 2008, the first ever edition of the Freeride World Tour (FWT) was completed after five successful events around the globe, finishing with the prestigious Nissan O’Neill Xtreme in Verbier, Switzerland. Elyse Saugstad (USA) and Henrik Windstedt (SWE) in skiing, Ruth Leisibach (SUI) and Xavier de le Rue (FRA) in snowboarding became the first Freeride World Champions in history.
The Freeride World Tour is on for the second edition. The world best professional freeriders are back on the Tour and have all confirmed their participation. A number of 40 male and female riders plus wild cards are invited to the first three contests: Nissan Russian Adventure in Sochi (Russia), Nissan Tram Face in Squaw Valley (USA), and Nissan Freeride in Tignes (France). The final contest will take place in Switzerland with the Nissan Xtreme – Verbier 09, on the gruelling north face of the Bec des Rosses, one of the most challenging descents in the world of freeriding.
Founder and organiser Nicolas Hale-Woods (SUI) is very pleased with the progression of the Freeride World Tour to its second edition. "The fact that 100% of the top ranked riders from last year have confirmed their participation for this year is really a measurement of success for the Freeride World Tour. We feel that the progression of the sport is strong. With the extensive support of our main partner Nissan, new partners joining in and top resorts like Sochi, Squaw Valley USA, Tignes and Verbier hosting our contests, we are attracting more and more attention of the public, the media and the industry. "
Jean-Pierre Diernaz, General Manager of Nissan's Marketing Communications in Europe said, "As we prepare for the second year of Nissan's commitment to the Freeride World Tour across Europe and North America, we are very excited by the addition of new Freeride World Qualifier events in countries including Italy, Slovakia and Norway. This will allow more athletes than ever before the opportunity to qualify for the four Nissan sponsored Tour events. Through these, we hope that the Freeride World Tour will uncover the next generation of male and female international skiers and snowboarders."
In order to allow freeriders who are not qualified for the Freeride World Tour to participate and score points, the Pro Freeriders Board elected existing international events to be part of the Freeride World Qualifier (FWQ). The FWQ is a series of independently organised events around the world. Riders participating in those events collect points in the Freeride World Ranking (FWR), a unique ranking list for both FWT and FWQ events. Riders from the Freeride World Tour and the Qualifier will therefore climb up and down the ranking list throughout the season. Finally the three best results will count to score the 2009 Freeride World Champions who will be crowned in Verbier after the Xtreme.
Visit us at www.freerideworldtour.com
The four events of the Freeride World Tour 2009 are:
1. NISSAN RUSSIAN ADVENTURE – SOCHI, RUSSIA
Dates: 20-25 JAN 2009, Preliminary contest day: Wednesday 21 January
2. NISSAN TRAM FACE – SQUAW VALLEY USA
Dates: 27 FEB-05 MAR 2009, Preliminary contest day: Saturday 28 February
3. NISSAN FREERIDE DE TIGNES, FRANCE
Dates: 8-14 March 2009, Preliminary contest day: Monday 9 March
4. NISSAN XTREME – VERBIER 09, SWITZERLAND
Dates: 20-29 March 2009, Preliminary contest day: Saturday 21 March
Confirmed Freeride World Qualifier (FWQ) events are:
(additional events to be confirmed by October 15)
THE NORTH FACE MASTERS OF SNOWBOARDING – SNOWBIRD (USA), 30 January-1 February – Freeride World Qualifier, sister events of the Nissan Tram Face – Squaw Valley (USA)
SPYDER BIG MOUNTAIN FIEBERBRUNN (AUT), 5-15 February 2009 – Freeride World Qualifier, sister event the Nissan Freeride de Tignes (FRA)
THE NORTH FACE MASTERS OF SNOWBOARDING – CRESTED BUTTE (USA), 13-15 February – Freeride World Qualifier, sister events of the Nissan Tram Face – Squaw Valley (USA)
WINTER MYSTICXPERIENCE (ITA), 19-22 February 2009 – Freeride World Qualifier
THE NORTH FACE MASTERS OF SNOWBOARDING – KIRKWOOD (USA), 6-8 March – Freeride World Qualifier
NENDAZ FREERIDE (SUI), 13-18 March 2009 – Freeride World Qualifier, sister event of the Nissan Xtreme – Verbier 09 (SUI)
JASNA ADRENALIN (SK), 31 March-5 April 2009 – Freeride World Qualifier
RÖLDAL FREERIDE CHALLENGE (NOR), 22-26 April 2009 – Freeride World Qualifier, sister event of the Nissan Russian Adventure – Sochi 2010