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 . world ski news
23 March 2010 - 19:24
The Freeride World Champions Crowned at the Nissan Xtreme by Swatch, Verbier
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FREERIDE WORLD TOUR. Verbier, Switzerland – March 23, 2010 – After the men’s final competition was postponed Saturday, due to bad visibility, the world’s best freeride skiers and snowboarders once again took on the mythical 600 metre North face of the Bec des Rosses. In perfect conditions the 24 male riders put on the most spectacular show with the fastest and most committed edition of the 15 years of the “Xtreme”. Several first descents were opened on the face. With this high level, the battle for first was extremely tight. The breathtaking performances of Swede Kaj Zackrisson, ski, and Frenchman Xavier de Le Rue, snowboard, took them to the first step of the podium.

The win in Verbier gave enough points for Xavier de Le Rue to score top position in the men’s snowboard ranking 2010. For the third executive year, the unbeatable Frenchman was crowned World Champion. Austrian Mitch Toelderer is vice Freeride World Champion 2010, and Matt Annetts (USA) took the third step of the podium.

French freestyle legend Candide Thovex can now claim to be part freeriding history. For his first season on the Freeride World Tour he has proved to be a consistent freeride competitor (3 podiums) with committed and influential skiing. Thovex’s impressive third place on his premiere run on the Bec des Rosses put him on top of the men’s ski ranking 2010. Swedes Kaj Zackrisson (2nd) and Henrik Windstedt (3rd) completed the podium.

The two male Freeride World Champions were awarded with a Nissan Qashqai, and the winners today went home with $ 10 000 each from the total prize purse of $ 206 200 for the Freeride World Tour 2010.

Results Nissan Xtreme by Swatch, Verbier

Men ski:
1. Kaj ZACKRISSON- SWE
2. Aurélien DUCROZ AURELIEN - FRA
3. Candide THOVEX – FRA
 
Men Snowboard:
1. Xavier DE LE RUE - FRA
2. Cyril NERI - SUI
3. Mitch TOELDERER - AUT

The Freeride World Tour Final Ranking 2010

Men ski:
1. Candide THOVEX – FRA
2. Kaj ZACKRISSON - SWE
3. Henrik WINDSTEDT - SWE
 
Men Snowboard:
1. Xavier DE LE RUE - FRA
2. Mitch TOELDERER - AUT
3. Matt ANNETTS - USA
 
Women ski:
1. Ane ENDERUD - NOR
2. Jess MC MILLAN - USA
3. Jaclyn PAASO - USA
 
Women Snowboard:
1. Aline BOCK - GER
2. Susan MOL - USA
3. Nathalie ZENKLUSEN - SUI

Quote Head Judge Snowboard - Berti Denervaud (SUI)
On Xavier de Le Rue’s (FRA) winning run:
“Xavier’s run was the fastest of the day. He took an original line and jumped a huge cliff that has never been jumped before in the 15 years of the Xtreme! The jump was at least 10 metres in one of the steepest and most committed parts of the face. He negotiated it perfectly, and managed slough and speed impressively.”

On the overall performance of the 11 competing snowboarders:
“It was a really tight field and all the riders were in great control, executing solid, original runs, with many new lines and no major tumbles. It is one of the rare contests where no one was scored below average”

Quote Seb Michaud (FRA) Judge Ski (injured FWT Rider)
On Kaj Zackrisson’s (SWE) winning run & Aurélien Ducroz 2nd:
“It was so tight between the first two riders Kaj and Aurélien. They skied more or less the same line but Kaj jumped one more cliff where Aurélien skied around. For the rest they both skied fast, fluid and stomped all the jumps in the extremely committed terrain, and taking the huge “Gilles Voirol” cliff in the middle clean. Just amazing.”

On the overall performance of the 13 competing skiers:
“The level just increases every year. Today the riders went faster than ever and very few fell. Each year we wonder if there will be any new lines, and once again several new lines were opened, like the original line of Sverre Liliequist SWE (5th).”

Quotes Riders

Xavier de Le Rue (FRA) – Triple Freeride World Champion Snowboard/ 1st Nissan Xtreme by Swatch
“I was here already 3-4 weeks ago and to inspect this line. When I came back last weekend I saw that it was in good condition. I knew it would be hairy but I felt confident. For me the most interesting aspect of the Freeride World Tour is that we inspect the faces really thoroughly. For days I concentrate on just one thing: my line, which never happens when filming or freeriding for myself. I manage to ride things I would never do otherwise. Everything in my run was meticulously planned – I knew there would be a lot of slough (surface snow sliding) as it was really steep so I needed a lot of speed and take the jump straight in the falline.”

Candide Thovex (FRA) – Freeride World Champion 2010 Ski / 3rd Nissan Xtreme by Swatch
 “Every one says I am the rookie, but I’m not! I have always been freeriding, since I was a kid. I am a skier. Freestyle, freeride, I ski whatever I enjoy. I have been inspecting the Bec des Rosses face really thoroughly. I was quite nervous and impressed by this big, committed face. It was really impressive at the top. Xavier de Le Rue gave me a lot of advice at the start – he was so confident and I was pretty nervous. I chose an easier jump in the end as my legs were so tired. I wanted to do the Freeride World Tour because it is just great to ski with riders like Auélien Ducroz, Kaj Zackrisson, Henrik Windstedt and Julien Lopez. I am astounded to be surrounded by such amazing athletes.”

Kaj Zackrisson (SWE) –1st Nissan Xtreme by Swatch (third win at the Xtreme!) – Freeride World Champion 2010 Ski /
 “The Xtreme is my biggest goal every year. It means a lot to me. When I train in the autumn I think of this face and this competition. I am always very nervous before the contest and have a hard time sleeping the night before. This year it was even more difficult as I had a great run on Saturday and had to redo my performance. I was so focused for my first run (Saturday) and it was hard to switch on once again. My favourite riders of the day were Xavier de Le Rue, always pushing the limits but always with such control, Sverre Liliequist because he opened a new really committed line, and Aurélien Ducroz because he just skied an exceptional run.”

Nicolas Hale-Woods, Founder and Organiser of the “Xtreme” in Verbier and the Freeride World Tour:
“The sport has evolved way beyond what we imagined back in 1996 and we feel that performances will continue to progress. Even though the riders compete to win the underlying freeride spirit remains with riders sharing ideas and spending considerable time together. Our goal is to preserve that unique spirit and simultaneously grow the Freeride World Tour together with riders and the involved ski resorts. In this respect, we are working on the expansion of the tour in 2011 so that more young riders can enter the qualifier events in North America, Europe and the Southern Hemisphere. Our goal for 2011 is also to add two more events at the FWT level. With freeriding now a leading trend in the snow industry, in many respects we feel like we've just begun - the best is yet to come."

Jean-Pierre Diernaz, General Manager of Nissan’s Marketing Communications in Europe:
“As co-founder of the Freeride World Tour, Nissan has been involved in this adventure from the beginning, and we are proud to have seen it grow into a world class sporting event. As part of Nissan’s goal to create ‘fantastic’ content to nourish the brand’s Nissan Sports Adventure platform, the tour and our partnership with Eurosport – to create the ‘Freeride Spirit’ show - has provided key consumer touch points. The 2010 season has been extremely intense, with spectacular performances by freeriding legends as well as new athletes who have been discovered at each of the contests. We are happy to celebrate with the new Tour champions crowned today at the 15th anniversary of the Nissan Xtreme by Swatch.”

Peter Mager, Vice President Communication Swatch International:
”Since its foundation in 1983, Swatch has always been involved in action sports. There have certainly been a lot of historical moments, but the show today, with an amazing end of the Freeride World Tour 2010, is one of the biggest highlights ever. On behalf of Swatch management, we are really happy to be a partner of the event and the Tour.”

Press Release
Freride World Tour 2010
23 March 2010


 
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Next:
Alpine Skiing Season Review – 12 April 2010 - 15:28
New season, new faces: Coach changes in Alpine Skiing – 08 May 2010 - 10:48
Official end of season but Mother Nature disagrees – 08 May 2010 - 10:51
More than 1'000 participants at the 47th International Ski Congress in Antalya (TUR) – 28 May 2010 - 23:05
Southern hemisphere ski season about to start – 01 June 2010 - 21:02

Previous:
Spescha and Dürr best in Alpine Skiing European Cup – 20 March 2010 - 21:38
Nissan Xtreme by Swatch Verbier 2010: Women Freeride World Champions Crowned – 20 March 2010 - 20:41
Ammann wins next title – 20 March 2010 - 14:31
Olafsen and Vaultier victorious in season’s last snowboard cross – 19 March 2010 - 20:52
Ammann und Malysz fast gleichauf – 19 March 2010 - 20:52

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