Freeride World Tour to merge with Freeskiing World Tour and TNF Masters for a unified global series

Comments by Henrik Lampert/

The Freeride World Tour, Freeskiing World Tour and The North Face Masters of Snowboarding have merged to create a unified global championship series for 2013. The Swatch Freeride World Tour by The North Face, as it will be called, announced a six-stop tour this morning. Tour locations include Revelstoke, Canada; Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France; Kirkwood, USA; Fieberbrunn Pillerseetal, Austria; an additional European stop TBD; and the World Tour finals in Verbier, Switzerland. The tour will include freeskiing and snowboarding at each stop.

“Big mountain freeriding has a long and rich history with incredibly talented athletes around the world,” said Adam Comey, Mountain Sports International President and Freeride World Tour Managing Director Americas. “Now, with two great brands in Swatch and The North Face, and two dedicated organizations in Europe and North America coming together for one mission and one tour, the next chapter of freeride skiing and snowboarding is very bright.”

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2013 Tour locations include Revelstoke, Chamonix, Kirkwood, Fieberbrunn Pillerseetal and Verbier.

The start lists for 2013 include qualified athletes from each of the three 2012 Tours, in addition to riders from 4-star qualifier events, plus a limited number of wild card entries from both North America and Europe.

“The union of the three tours is a major step in the sport’s growth,” said Nicolas Hale-Woods, Freeride World Tour Managing Director Europe. “Not only at World Tour (FWT) level, but also at qualifying level, with events happening in New-Zealand, North and South America, and Europe, all counting for one unique Freeride World Qualifiers (FWQ) ranking, enabling riders from all active areas to qualify for the next season’s Swatch Freeride World Tour by The North Face.”

Approximately 40 qualifier events (FWQ) will be hosted around the world, ranging from 1- to 4-stars. Aspiring athletes will compete at these competitions in an attempt to work their way toward a future FWT start. The first stops of the 4-star FWQ will be hosted in New Zealand and Chile in August of this year. Athletes will accumulate points on two separate scales: a 5-star FWT ranking, and a 1- to 4-star FWQ ranking.

Reine Barkered of Sweden, the 2012 Swatch Freeride World Tour Champion, had this to say about the union of the Tours: “The merger of the two ski tours is a great step for our sport. It will add even more recognition around the world. For me as a rider I’m looking forward to an even more exciting season with a lot of new faces.”

Barkered’s fellow competitor Drew Tabke agrees: “Beyond the details of judging, rankings, and format, I’m most excited to see the two tours’ top riders compete against one another. The best event last year was the combined event at Revelstoke. This event represented the ideal outcome of this merger of the two tours—a legitimate representation of the world’s best riders competing on a world-class venue.”

Swatch Freeride World Tour by The North Face 2013

Swatch Freeride World Tour by The North Face 2013 competition calendar:

1. Swatch Freeride World Tour Revelstoke 2013 by The North Face
Dates: 7-12 January; Location: Revelstoke (CAN)
Disciplines: Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard

2. Swatch Freeride World Tour Chamonix-Mont-Blanc 2013 by The North Face
Dates: 26 January-1 February; Location: Chamonix-Mont-Blanc (FRA)
Disciplines: Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard

3. Swatch Freeride World Tour Kirkwood 2013 by The North Face
Dates: 27 February-3 March; Location: Kirkwood (USA)
Disciplines: Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard

4. Swatch Freeride World Tour Fieberbrunn Pillerseetal 2013 by The North Face
Dates: 9-15 March; Location: Fieberbrunn Pillerseetal (AUT)
Disciplines: Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard

5. Stop No 5 in Europe – Location TBD

6. Swatch Verbier Xtreme 2013 by The North Face
Dates: 23-31 March; Location: Verbier (SUI)
Disciplines: Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard