The Ticket to Ride (TTR) World Tour organisers have just held their annual meeting, the outcome of which has been the creation of a new World Snowboarding Championships, to be held every four years.
Obviously this is huge news which raises a lot of questions: Is this effectively a 'core' version of the Olympics? And what if the Olympic guys decide to include slopestyle - will the TTR event still attract all the key riders, and will it still stand out? How will qualification work? And is it really possible to crown a snowboarding 'World Champion' every four years? What about injuries?
On the positive side, this could be the birth of something really exciting - a crucible for next level parks and riding. Read the official press release below and let us know what YOU reckon in the comments box at the end...
Barcelona - May 24th, 2010: TTR Pro Snowboarding today announces the creation of the World Snowboarding Championships. A new world-class snowboarding event, the World Snowboarding Championships will be held every four years and will feature men’s and women’s halfpipe and slopestyle disciplines. The first event is planned for the 2011/2012 season and will create an environment for the best freestyle riders to compete for world snowboard champion titles in both halfpipe and slopestyle formats.
“The creation of the Snowboarding World Championships is a great step forward for the TTR and the world of snowboarding as a whole," says Reto Lamm, President of the TTR World Tour. “We look forward to putting on a world-class event to push the progression of the sport and provide a global platform to showcase the best riders in the world."
The concept for the World Snowboarding Championships was developed by a group of international representatives of the sport at the 2009 TTR General Assembly in Austria and is a joint project of the TTR World Tour and the World Snowboard Federation (WSF). With a unanimous vote at the General Assembly 2010, the application for the Norwegian capital, Oslo, has been accepted to hold the inaugural event in 2012. The proposal was put forward by a consortium of the Norwegian Snowboard Federation, the Arctic Challenge organizers and the hosting resort Tryvann.
The municipality of Oslo will back the project with $4.3-million USD for the event and another $1.3-million USD for preparations. The final decision whether the event will take place is pending approval by the Norwegian Ministry of the Environment for the expansion plans of the event arena at Tryvann Vinterpark.
After the 2011/2012 event, the World Snowboarding Championships will continually change locations every four years and will take applications from cities around the world to host future events. Other details surrounding the event, such as qualifications, prize money and event schedules will be determined over the next six months and will be released as they are finalized.