The Air + Style Los Angeles is now one of the world’s most high-profile Big Air contests. Photo: Sami Touriniemi
Following snowboarding’s competitive circuit has rarely been easy, mainly thanks to the presence of two rival tours – neither of which has the best of track records.
On the one hand you have the Fédération Internationale du Ski (FIS), which went from barely acknowledging snowboarding’s existence to presiding over its Olympic qualification process in a disturbingly short period of time. These days they run several successful snowboarding events, including their World Cup series, but the tour still struggles to shake off the baggage of history.
Then there’s the World Snowboard Tour (WST). While on paper it’s always been ‘for snowboarders, by snowboarders’, that’s never quite been enough to consistently attract the best riders – especially when an Olympic cycle rolls around.
“A lot of things change from year to year, making the competitive calendar a hard one with which to keep up”
On top of those, there’s the odd event that’s independent of either tour. These don’t tend to be “elite” contests, yet for various reasons they’ve become staples of the calendar.
A lot of things change from year to year, making the competitive circuit a hard one with which to keep up. Major shake-ups for 2016/17 include the Laax Open joining the FIS World Cup Circuit, and FIS running a ‘Super Series‘ of Big Air comps in major cities that looks an awful lot like the Air + Style.
This is all subject to further tweaks – events continue to be announced as we approach winter, the WST won’t be confirming their full calendar until early December, and some events may count for both tours – but here’s what we know so far. Included is key information about each event, covering the folowing categories:
- Venue – where it’s all going down, obviously.
- Disciplines – Slopestyle, Halfpipe and Big Air are the popular ones here; for the sake of simplicity we’ve omitted snowboardcross and any other forms of racing (with one notable exception). Occasionally a quarterpipe comp or rail jam may sneak in too, though.
If you’re more interested in freeriding, you can find all the dates and information for the Freeride World Tour here.
- Tour affiliation – Whether the event is part of the FIS tour, the WST, or neither.
- M/F – Whether the event caters for men, women, or both.
Events are listed in chronological order – click a link to skip:
APRIL 2017: The Brits