MEET THE 12 ROOKIES QUALIFIED FOR FWT20
Meet the riders who qualified to compete amongst the world’s best on the Freeride World Tour 2020
The road to the most prestigious stage in big mountain riding is paved by the hard work and determination of aspiring FWT athletes from around the globe. With only twelve slots up for grabs, earning the chance to compete against the world’s best is a grueling grind fought all winter long by hundreds of riders competing in Freeride World Qualifier (FWQ) events in two regions: Region 1 (Europe/Oceania Asia) and Region 2 (The Americas).
Following the completion of the FWQ 4* competitions in Kirkwood and Obergurgl-Hochgurgl (the later being cancelled due to safety concerns), eleven athletes from the two regions have now officially earned enough points to join the FWT20 line-up.
Carl Renvall (SUI) showed his strong and consistent performances during the 2019 FWQ to earn a place back on the FWT after failing to re-qualify in 2018. He’ll be joined by the hardworking Kiwi, Blake Marshall (NZL) who competed in 8 events in both the Southern and Northern hemispheres during his endless 2019 winter. He landed himself on two 4* podiums earning enough points for a well-deserved spot on FWT20. The third spot is still up for grabs and will be determined following the Jam Extreme 3* (12-14 April).
Tao Kreibich (AUT) Tao started his life as a skier at the tender age of two. After an alpine racing career he turned his focus onto the most natural way to move down a mountain: Freeriding. Tao successfully competed on the FJT & FWQ, he will now reach his ultimate goal : to leave his mark on the Freeride World Tour!
Cody Bramwell (SWE) will join the world’s best big mountain snowboarders in FWT20 thanks to a very consistent 2019 FWQ campaign, with two 1st place finishes at 4* events.
Jess Hotter (NZL) will proudly represent New Zealand in the FWT20 Ski Women category after winning a mind blowing three 4* events wins during her long 2019 FWQ grind.
Michaela Davis-Meehan (AUS) is the second Australian in the snowboard category on Tour! She made her FWT20 dreams come true with her recent win in Nendaz and will surely be looking to give a run for her money next season.
Kevin Nichols (USA) and Jack Nichols (USA) hailing from Vail, Colorado who were both forces to be reckoned with at the 2019 FWQ will be the newest brother rivalry on FWT20. Backcountry freestyle specialist Isaac Freeland’s (USA) consistent performances earned him a spot on FWT20 and will surely be looking to put his skills to the test against veteran style masters like FWT19 world champ Markus Eder (ITA) and former champs such as Drew Tabke (USA) and Leo Slemett (FRA).
Blake Moller (USA), brother of FWT18/19 athlete Grifen Moller (USA), worked extremely hard to earn his spot on next year’s tour. He won three 4* events and competed in 13 FWQ comps throughout the winter.
Emma Patterson (USA) had a very consistent 2019 FWQ campaign with two 1st place results and podium finishes in four out of the five events she competed in.
40 year old veteran competitor, Michelle Locke (CAN) has been grinding it out in FWQ events since 2012. She qualified for the 2016 FWT but failed to make the requalification cut. Four years later, she still refused to give up her dream to compete with the world’s best and successfully earned enough points to qualify for FWT20.
After another huge season of progression, stellar performances, and inspiring determination, the FWQ invited riders list for FWT20 is nearly complete. Be sure to keep an eye on the FWT and FWQ social media channels and freerideworldtour.com for every update. We look forward to watching the world’s top rookie riders face-off against the world’s best next year!