Friday Mar 04, 2011

FWT 2011 - Day 1 in Russia

Due to the abundance of great snow the Freeride World Tour athletes enjoyed a great powder day on Day 1 of the Nissan Russian Adventure Sochi 2011, at Rosa Khutor ski station, the future alpine site of the 2014 Winter Olympics. The good conditions inspired the world’s top freeriders to display creative riding and fast lines with big airs and spectacular tricks. Norwegian wild card Aasmund Thorsen impressed by winning his first Freeride World Tour competition on rental boots. Douds Charlet dominated the snowboarders with the most stylish run of the day.
Day 1 of the Nissan Russian Adventure Sochi 2011 took place on a 300 vertical meter face on top of the newly opened lift station Rosa Khutor in the Caucasian resort of Krasnaya Polyana, Sochi. The competition face was shorter and less committed than what the Freeride World Tour riders are used to but featured a playful terrain allowing the athletes to pull off a great show in perfect snow conditions. With big smiles on their faces the riders enjoyed a good start to their Russian adventure.
Ski Men Dominated by Scandinavians
The Scandinavian skiers had a successful day taking the top podium spots, and it is interesting to note that all three were skiing on borrowed parts of equipment due to lost luggage! Today's best rider was wildcard Aasmund Thorsen (NOR), who according to the judges skied the cleanest and most creative run of the day, choosing a unique line with great fluidity and taking every air with clean landings. This despite skiing boots that were too big from the local rental shop! He was followed by Henrik Windstedt (SWE), skiing a clean line including several features and sticking a back flip at the end of the run, also on borrowed ski boots that were a size too big. Erik Sunnerheim (SWE) rounded out the top three in loaner ski clothes and without his important knee brace.
Aasmund Thorsen (NOR): “I got to borrow clothes of Mati Imbert (French FWT rider) and got the boots this morning in the rental shop. They were a bit too big and I was floating in there! But it still went well.. I am really happy! I was the only one taking the big triangle (cliff jump) on top and I guess I managed to please the judges although I could not ski at 100 percent!”
Snowboard Men Enjoying the Playful Terrain
Today’s venue seemed to perfectly suited to riders with a freestyle background. The winner of the day, Chamonix Mont-Blanc's Douds Charlet (FRA), who is known for his smooth style, took the most committed line with a lot of speed, big jumps and stylish tricks, including a 360 frontside at the top of the run.  Overall tour leader, Xavier de Le Rue (FRA), took second place with an original line choice. Flo Orley (AUT) claimed the third spot with a fluid, stylish run and a beautiful line choice for the public eye.
Douds Charlet (FRA): “The conditions were so great. What a good day, it worked really well for me! A lot of guys wanted to jump the same big cliff but I managed to land it well. I am happy!”
Flo Orley (AUT): “Today is basically the best powder day I’ve had this season! First some good warm up runs and then the great powder conditions on the face created good vibes among the riders.”

Channels: Freeride World Tour 2011, Freeski, Snowboard