04/07/2011 | by Tom Copsey
As you’ll no doubt have heard, come February next year competitive snowboarding’s eye will be trained squarely on Oslo for the inaugural World Snowboarding Championships. Now the TTR and World Snowboard Federation have announced exactly what riders need to have achieved to get a shot at the new big time…
It’ll be the first world champs run by snowboarders since 1999, and will run in a four-yearly cycle just like the World Cup and some other winter sports bonanza that we just can’t remember. And, as you’d expect, it’s gonna be a big ‘un – they expect a total of 240 riders to be involved across the disciplines of halfpipe, slopestyle and quarter pipe, pulled in from the season’s TTR rankings’ top 50, riders who’ve won Tour titles or 6 Star events in the previous 3 years, and national level champions along with a small number of Wildcards being up for grabs. Of course, there’ll be plenty of greenbacks to be earned, along with a trophy and the kudos that goes with the titles.
Here are the details in full…
TTR Pro Snowboarding and the World Snowboard Federation together announced on the 15th December 2010 the official qualification criteria for the 2012 World Snowboarding Championships set to take place February 11-19, 2012 in Oslo, Norway at the Tryvann Vinterpark resort arena.
The World Snowboarding Championships will be held every four years and will host halfpipe and slopestyle competitions that will crown world champions for men and women in each discipline. Athletes will qualify for the World Snowboarding Championships through the Swatch TTR World Rankings and WSF National Quota. Below is a complete breakdown of how riders will be able to qualify for the inaugural 2012 World Snowboarding Championships beginning with competitor field size, moving on to minimum requirements for all riders and specific criteria, which will guarantee riders a spot to compete.
Rider Field Sizes at the World Snowboarding Championships
The World Snowboarding Championships will have a maximum of 240 spots available for male and female athletes to compete across both slopestyle and halfpipe disciplines. The estimated field sizes will be 70 riders for men in each discipline and 50 riders for women in each discipline.
Minimum Requirements to Qualify
The TTR and WSF have developed a per discipline world ranking where riders are ranked in a Halfpipe World Ranking and in a Slopestyle World Ranking. In order to participate in the World Snowboarding Championships, riders will need to fulfill the minimum requirement of being ranked in the TTR Top 500 for men and in the TTR Top 250 for women in each respective discipline ranking. The Halfpipe World Ranking will include all halfpipe and quarterpipe competitions and will rank riders who have competed at least once in one of the formats. The Slopestyle World Ranking will include all slopestyle and big air competitions and, as above, will rank riders who have competed at least once in the formats. A rider’s position on each world ranking list will be determined by the average of his/her best three results for the Halfpipe Ranking and best four results for the Slopestyle Ranking over a rolling 52 week period.
Below are the four different ways in which riders can guarantee a spot to compete in the World Snowboarding Championships after meeting the minimum requirements outlined above.
- TTR World Ranking Quota
Male riders ranked 50 or higher, and female riders ranked 30 or higher, on the TTR Halfpipe World Ranking or Slopestyle World Ranking will be automatically eligible to compete in the respective discipline they qualify for. The cut-off date for qualification into the 2012 event will be Monday, January 16th, 2012.
- WSF Nations Quota
Each WSF member Nation is entitled to qualify one rider for both men and women in each discipline. Therefore, each nation is entitled to a maximum of 4 spots and will need to use a national event, such as a national championships event, or a national criteria approved by the WSF Event Committee, to qualify riders. All national quota spots for the 2012 event need to be announced by the National Snowboard Associations no later than Monday, January 16th, 2012. If one or several riders are already eligible to compete through one of the other qualification criteria, the open spot falls to the best national rider not yet qualified based on the defined national qualification criteria.
- TTR World Champions and 6Star Title Winners
All TTR World Tour Champions from the last three years (2008/09, 2009/10, 2010/11) are eligible to compete in all disciplines at the World Snowboarding Championships. And, all TTR 6Star title winners from the last 53 weeks prior to Monday, January 16th, 2012, are eligible to compete in the discipline in which they won the title for.
The organizing committee of the World Snowboarding Championships is entitled to qualify two additional competitors in each discipline for men and women (eight total wild cards) which all need to be approved by TTR/WSF.
Registration for and entry into the World Snowboarding Championships is free to all riders who qualify. All qualified riders are required to confirm their attendance no more than seven days after the qualified riders have been announced. The exact date of this deadline will be communicated at least four weeks before the cut-off date for qualification, which is Monday, January 16th, 2012. If a rider fails to confirm his/her attendance by the deadline, the rider will lose the right to compete at the event and the open spot will fall back to the organizing committee of the event, who have the right to re-assign the spot as a wild card or define additional qualification criteria.
Titles, Awards and Prize Money at the World Snowboarding Championships
Riders will be competing for male and female Halfpipe World Champion and Slopestyle World Champion titles at the World Snowboarding Championships. These World Champion titles will be awarded to the winning male and female rider in each discipline. In addition, all top three finishers in each discipline (first, second and third place finishers) will receive recognition in the form of a medal/trophy along with prize money.