Austrian Pitztal is showing its Wild Face again
Thu 20 February 14
Weakness is not what either spectators want to see nor the competitors want to show when racing the Pitztal Wild Face.
The riders of this Freeride Extreme event in the Austrian west compete in the powder fighting time, because for once a Freeride World Qualifier is not being judged, it’s only time that counts, in 2014 even more as the Pitztal Wild Face Freeride Extreme powered by Amway has risen from a one star to a two star event of the Freeride World Qualifier Tour.
This competition format is extraordinary in the freeride contest world. Normally riders on snowboards and on skis going through alpine terrain try to collect points from the judges for their style, their fluency and their tricks. This time it’s only speed that counts. Riders not only have to be fast in one race, they also have to speed in the qualification run from the Muttenkopf in the Rifflsee resort in Pitztal to make it into the final, which is held from the Mittagskogel at the Pitztal glacier. The top 60 riders are advancing to the final.
At the qualification run every skier and snowboarder - male and female - can compete. There are no points or a good ranking in the seeding list of the Freeride World Qualifier Tour needed. Even the best riders of the tour have to do the qualification run. But at the end there will be 2-Star-Freeride World Qualifier points for much more than just the finalist. Riders who did not make it into the final will be listed due to their qualification run in the final result.
In the final – the main race of the Pitztal Wild Face Freeride Extreme – riders have to pass five corridor gates between the start at the Mittagskogel and the finishing line at Mandarfen. Except passing those corridor gates the riders are free in their choice of line down the face. As starting signals will be given in one minute intervals fans watching the contest either on the mountain or via videowall at the finishing area will be sure to see spectacular action, overtaking maneuvers included. It takes 1,510 meters of vertical height and 4.6 kilometers of distance to have it all done. Riders need the physical fitness for a ride at full speed that lasts about 8 to 13 minutes.
Competitors race in 4 different categories: ski men, ski women, snowboard men and snowboard women. The fastest of each category will not only receive the Pitztal Wild Face trophy but also 600 FWQ points, which one needs to get a spot in a higher level Freeride World Qualifier competition and to rise with the best riders of the Freeride Qualifier Tour to the Freeride World Tour.
Riders were able to register online for the 2-Star-FWQ event Pitztal Wild Face on the Freeride World Tour website until the beginning of February. A last chance to register and compete in this extreme event will be given to skiers and snowboarders in the morning of the qualification day, which is February 28. So far 120 riders from all over Europe, from Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Norway, France, Italy, Sweden, Finnland, Hungary and Russia are on the list for the 2014 Pitztal Wild Face contest, wanting to fight for the win and the FWQ points.
The public is invited to come and see the action at the Pitztal Wild Face live on videowall at the finishing area in Mandarfen. A big screen and cameras will bring the runs from the mountain to the spectators in the valley, where music and speakers will keep them informed and entertained. Food stands and free XS Powder Drinks will keep the crowd in the mood as well. The speedgliding show from Parataxi Pitztal will heat up the finishing area before the contests starts.
Program Pitztal Wild Face 2014 powered by Amway
Thursday, February 27, 2014 – face inspections
12.00 pm face inspection main run Mittagskogel (Pitztal glacier)
03.00 pm face inspection qualification run Muttenkopf (Rifflsee)
from 04.30 pm on Freeride Lounge at the bar “Hexenkessl” in Tieflehn
Friday, February 28, 2014 – qualification day
from 09.00 am on beginning of the spectators program at the finish at “Hexenkessl”
09.30 am start qualification at Muttenkopf (Rifflsee)
04.00 pm announcement of riders in the final
from 05.00 pm on Party at the finishing area
from 09.00 pm on Pitztal Wild Face Pre-Party at “Hexenkessl”
Saturday, March 1, 2014 – final race „Pitztal Wild Face“
from 11.00 am on beginning of the spectators program at the finishing area in Mandarfen
12.00 am start of the Pitztal Wild Face final run with videowall at the finish
03.30 am price giving and race party at the finishing area in Mandarfen
from 08.00 pm on After Session at “Hexenkessl” with DJ und Specials
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