Get ready for the first of the 4 FWT stops in Sochi, Russia, January 20th — 25th The Freeride World Tour kicks off in Sochi and the world’s best riders, the organizers, the partners and a team of certified judges are ready for the action.
The Nissan Russian Adventure will take place at the ski resort Krasnaya Polyana in the Western Caucasus. Krasnaya Polyana will be the host of the Alpine and Nordic ski events for the 2014 Winter Olympics, with Sochi as host city. The contest is organized by renowned Russian extreme skier Nikolay Veselovskiy. The first qualifying run will take place at one of the resort venues and will be very accessible for the public. The final run should be held on a higher peak only accessible by helicopter. The exact peak will be determined depending on where the best snow conditions can be found. The lastest snow report confirmed more than 2m of fresh snow at the top and great skiing conditions for the Freeride World Tour launch!
The top athletes of the 2008 Freeride World Ranking are full of anticipation as they prepare for the new season.
With great snow already covering all the Alps, French skiers Aurélien Ducroz (3rd FWT 08) and Sébastien Michaud (2nd FWT 08) are warming up their legs to get ready to go for their 2009 goal: to be the Freeride World Champion! Henrik Windstedt (1st FWT 08), amazing Swedish all-round skier (Freestyle and Big mountain specialist) probably does not agree with these French guys because he wants to hold on to his title for a second season! So does the American talent, Cody Townsend (5th FWT 08), who is one of the main favorites for the FWT’s second stop on the mythic Tram Face, on his home mountain at Squaw Valley USA!
Sébastien Michaud (FRA): «My motivation is still there. At the age of 36, you don’t think about competing in the same way as when you were 25. Pressure to get top results, that’s been gone for a long time now. Only the pure pleasure matters now. To take in every moment, riding with your friends all across the globe. The FWT is good for our sport. The organizers had the great idea to actually consult riders on the judging and qualification systems. What really impressed me was the fact we cannot go check out the face and ski on it before the competition. The true essence of freeriding is thus respected.»
Takuji Fujii, Managing Director, Nissan Motor Russia says: «Nissan is excited that Sochi is hosting the Freeride World Tour in Russia for the second consecutive year and to be raising the profile of this sport in our country. As professional athletes travel from all around the world to join the event, we look forward to seeing more and more local talent competing.»
Meanwhile, the snowboarding stars are also preparing themselves for a big season. Xavier de Le Rue (1st FWT 08) proved he is already back with a recent victory in boardercross. Swiss riders Ruth Leisibach (1st FWT 08) and Cyril Neri (4th FWT 08) are already showing great promise in the Valais Mountain range and are preparing themselves for the legendary Bec des Rosses — the Nissan Xtreme Verbier face and the location for the final of the Freeride World Tour.