The Region 2 Riders Qualified for the FWT23 | Freeride World Tour

The Region 2 Riders Qualified for the FWT23

The first FWQ Final series is a wrap in Region 2! 9 more spots are up for grabs for the Region 1 riders…

After an electric wrap-up to the FWT World Tour 22 at the Xtreme Verbier, the freeride story is not over yet for this season. Yesterday, the last region 2 FWQ Final was held in Kirkwood, California.

This year the top-ranked FWQ riders were joined by FWT riders following the elimination after Kicking Horse, Golden BC for the FWQ Finals. And what a watch these events proved to be! The level was extremely high between the athletes. Every category delivered cutting-edge riding, high drama, and stress-inducing viewing.

It was an intense day filled with excitement, nerves, and undeniably some tears of joy or even disappointment. After some uncertainty and brilliant performances, nine riders from region 2 have claimed their spot in the FWT23.  Out of this cluster of qualified riders, there is a mixture of FWT returners and rookies.

FWT23 Qualified Riders

 

SKI MEN

With four qualifying spots up for grabs, and with 27 riders competing in total; riders had to land a series of incredible runs to be within the top of the rankings. This was the most varied field in terms of results throughout the finals; some riders who achieved podiums in one venue, were cursed with bad luck in another. Highlighting the importance of the best two out of three results counting, and allowing athletes to reset. 

Jedidiah Kravitz (USA), after ten years of participating in the qualifiers, achieved the top-ranked position of the season with 4700 pts. He achieved great results in the first two Finals; a first and second spot, allowing these to disregard his downfall in Kirkwood (26th position). The second qualified rider is Xander Guldman (USA), who only started competing on the FWQ this year, but has managed to achieve dominating results all season.  He finalized this streak by finishing 2nd in Kirkwood.

Dillon Flinders (USA), the youngest athlete in ski men to have qualified, secured his spot by winning in Kirkwood. This allowed his scoring to boost his middle-ranked scores this season. Last and not least, Leif Mumma (USA), achieved a 2nd place in Big Sky and despite missing out on the podium, he was able to secure the final ticket onto the FWT23 by coming 6th in Kirkwood. 

 

SKI WOMEN

Only two qualifying spots were up for grabs. This was no pressure for the two young skiers who recently joined the FWQ circuit from the Juniors circuit. 

Addison Rafford (USA) dominated the field all season by coming 1st in Big Sky, and Kirkwood despite a hiccup in Crystal Mountain; where she came 9th. Her performance has allowed her to finish top of the FWQ Final rankings as well. This allowed her to claim a spot on the FWT next year. 

Delila Quinn (USA) is the second ski women to be going to the FWT next year. She competed at the FJWC in Verbier last year, where she proved her undeniable skills in freeriding as she was crowned vice world champion. Her strong performance streak continued as she came 2nd, and 3rd in Big Sky and Crystal Mountain, despite achieving 5th yesterday. 

 

SNOW MEN

Similarly, to ski women, there were two spots up for grabs, and this was a knuckle gripping watch between the finals as the athletes at the top of the rankings were extremely close in terms of points.

Jonathan Penfield (USA), despite a 10th place in Big Sky, remained at the top of the podium in Kirkwood and in Crystal Mountain, allowing him to dominate the field and reclaimed his spot for the FWT23 after two years of absence.

Holden Samuels (USA), is the second snowboarder to have qualified for the FWT23. He competed at the FJWC in Kappl in 2018, and ever since then joined the FWQ circuit. This year he proved the skills that he has built over the years by podiuming twice in the FWQ Finals. 

 

SNOW WOMEN

With one qualifying spot, Katie Anderson (CAN) asserted her dominance over the FWQ athletes, and reclaimed her spot for the FWT23. She was previously on the Tour in 2021 and 2022 but things did not go her way in Kicking Horse. At each FWQ Final, she claimed a different spot on the podium, allowing her best 1st and 2nd to count towards the qualification.

 

This new format in the FWQ circuit has proved that this change was necessary to continue to promote and sustain the development of freeriding. This was the first year in which the circuit generated as much interest due to the competitiveness it promised; having Tour and FWQ riders compete against each other. 

The season is not over yet in Region 1, the last FWQ Final will take place at the beginning of next week in OberGurgl (the official date will be confirmed soon). This will ensure a wrap and finalization of the rest of the athletes who will join the FWT circuit in 2023.  

So don’t forget to tune in to the final event of this new FWQ Final event. This is an event that you do not want to miss, so mark it in your calendars! It will have its own must-see live broadcast and will be available through www.freerideworldtour.com, as well as up-to-the-minute updates on social media.