Revelstoke Mountain Resort’s Mac Daddy face burst through a sea of clouds and was illuminated by crystal clear skies.
The picturesque day started with men’s snowboarding on the pristine, snow covered venue. Ralph Backstrom of Squaw Valley, CA, USA defended his 2012 Revelstoke title “I was a little nervous we wouldn’t have good light conditions after the past few days but was so excited to have bluebird skies,” explained Ralph Backstrom. “The super steep pitch of Mac Daddy makes it difficult not to go over the handle bars when landing jumps. I really like the big features that exist on this terrain.” As the Freeride World Tour season continues, Backstrom is looking forward to competing in the coming events.
Continuing on the men’s snowboard podium was Ludovic Guillot-Diat of Villard-de-Lans, France taking second place with a very fast and fluid run. Also representing France was third place finisher Aurelien Routens from La Grave who aggressively charged down the fall line.
Topping the field for men’s ski competitors with an outstanding performance throughout the whole venue was Drew Tabke of Crystal Mountain, Washington,. This event was the first time Tabke has found himself placed on the top of the podium with a second and third place finish here in the past. “Mac Daddy is one of the most beautiful mountain we get to ski on the tour and the snow in British Columbia is amazing,” exclaimed an elated Tabke. “Some challenging conditions existed on the venue due to slides, but my line had great snow. The choice of the line was pretty strategic for me here. I wanted to avoid tracked out terrain and therefore went for a pretty original line. I think I am the first one to ever attempt this line on this mountain, sticking it from top to bottom.” He further noted his season goal is to win the overall 2013 Freeride World Tour title. “The title means more than ever before, but mostly, I want to have fun skiing with all of these incredible athletes from around the world.”
Rounding out the men’s podium in second place was Jeremie Heitz of Les Manecottes, Switzerland. Jeremy was one of the few skiers to successfully ski the fall-line high-speed double from the start confidently through exposure. Finishing out the top three male skiers, Julien Lopez of France who strongly skied the riders right-hand side portion of the Mac Daddy face which consisted of multiple pillow drops and cliffs which rewarded him a good score.
In the afternoon, it was time for the women to put on the show. Shannan Yates of Snowbird Ski Resort, Utah USA took the ladies snowboard podium with her smooth style and confident big mountain riding. “This is the steepest venue the female snowboarders have yet to face,” said Yates. “The top of the run was variable and icy making it hard to go fast, but I managed to ride my line and land both airs.”
Margot Rozies of Pyrenees, France managed to grab the second spot and Elodie Mouthon also from France joined the podium in third.
Female skiers were faced with the most difficult conditions of the day created by slough movement and tracked out terrain from all the previous competitors. The 2012 Overall Freeride World Tour Women’s Ski Champion, Christine Hargin of Sweden once again placed herself on top of the podium with a well balanced polished run throughout the face.
Nadine Wallner of Arlberg, AUT took the second place. And finally, the effervescent Australian Natalie Segal, executed a smooth double pillow drop which was rewarded third place finish.
“It is difficult to describe what a momentous accomplishment today’s event was for the riders and sport of freeriding,” said FWT Americas Event Director Bryan Barlow. “Today officially marked the unification of the Freeride World Tour. We have set the bar very high here at Revelstoke and I look forward to watching the season unfold. See you in Courmayeur, Italy, next weekend !”
The SWATCH FREERIDE WORLD TOUR BY THE NORTH FACE® continues its competition schedule in Courmayeur Mont Blanc, Italy on January 19th (Men's Ski and Snowboard), Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France on January 26th (Men's and Women's Ski and Snowboard), Kirkwood, California, USA on February 27th (Men's and Women's Ski and Snowboard), Fieberbrunn PillerseeTal, Austria on March 9th (Men's and Women's Ski and Snowboard), and concludes in Verbier, Switzerland on March 23rd (Men's and Women's Ski and Snowboard).
Archive video of the event action is located on FreerideWorldTour.com. Fans may select to view the entire event or just watch their favorite riders’ runs on the FWT video play