Fieberbrunn is in the books, and Freeride World Tour has reached the first stage of eliminations. Wednesday’s competition marked the last chance for riders to qualify for the tour’s next stop in Haines (March 18-25), the last before its final in Verbier (April 1-9). Canadian athletes Logan Pehota (men’s ski) and Audrey Hebert (women’s snowboard) made the podium, with second and third respectively, and Logan making the cut for Alaska. Audrey, unfortunately, did not qualify for Haines, though she rounded out her rookie season with a very strong performance. Her run showed fly-on-the-wall board control, fluid turns in steep terrain, and a great foundation in fall-line airs.
Women’s snowboard winner Marion Haerty (FRA) had the technical edge with a tricky entrance into her line, and veteran Shannon Yates (USA) earned her second place with controlled riding through steep sections of the course’s rolling lower slopes. Haerty and Yates made the mid-season cut, along with Anne-Flore Marxer (SUI) and Nicola Thost (GER), who edged out Hebert by 45 points.
On the men’s side, Sammy Luebke (USA) defended his Fieberbrunn title with big tricks and confident airs. Jonathan Penfield (USA) put down a beauty of a run, riding above exposure unphased and popping playful banked airs off of spines. Austria local Thomas Feurstein held it down for the home crowed in third. The Vallnord-Arcolis silver medalist has been having a great rookie season. His run showed his chops in technical terrain, with some ballsy lines in a scraped and exposed section rider’s left of the course.
Luebke, Penfield, and Feurstein qualified for Haines, along with Christoffer Granbom (SWE), Ralph Backstrom (USA), and Davey Baird (USA). Stay tuned next week as our Freeride World Tour and Freeride World Qualifier coverage continues here in Canada, with the Wrangle the Chute 4-star in Golden, British Columbia. The event always brings a host of powder highway rippers out of the woodwork, and we’ll be checking in on the scene as we peel back the cover on Canadian competitive freeriding.
For full results, event replay, and more information on the Freeride World Tour, visit http://www.freerideworldtour.com/event/swatch-freeride-world-tour-fieberbrunn-2017