After the first rounds, 18 male and female Groms have booked their tickets for the big finals.
The qualifications for the youngest competitors at the 2014 VÖLKL WORLD ROOKIE FINALS were going down today. Within the 41 strong field of Groms, every rider had the chance to impress the judges in two runs – the best run counted for the ranking. The six best female and the twelve best male Groms qualified to the finals which are scheduled for Saturday, April 5th 2014.
Elli Pikkujamsa (FIN) showed today’s best run among the girls performing a solid Cab 180 Tail and a Backside 360 on the first two jumps. Hanne Kjøll Eilertsen (NOR) qualified as second with two Straight Nose Grabs on the large line followed by Reira Iwabuchi (JPN) who came third with a Backside 360 and a Frontside 360. The youngest participant of the contest was 7 years old Jaquelina de Jong (NED) performing one 14 – and one 13 meters Straight Jump.
The Grom boys showcased a high level of riding “who would have no problems in competing in the Rookies age category", as head judge Giulio Neri commented.
Sam Christie (NZL) resulted as the best rider of the day with a huge run including a Frontside 720 Melon Grab on the first kicker, a solid Backside 720 Mute on the second jump, a massive Frontside 360 out of the toblerone and finishing it off with a 360 out of the rail. Second ranked Rene Rinnekangas (FIN) impressed with a big Backside 720 mute and a stomped Frontside 720 Mellon on the kickers followed by a huge Method out of the toblerone, a nice Frontside Boardslide 270 out and ending up with a Handplant 270 on the pinkball. Kaito Hamada (JPN) showcased a cool Backside 720 Mellon as well as a Backside Rodeo 540 on the first two jumps. He then laid down a Cab 180 in and 360 out of the toblerone, jibbing with a frontside boardslide 270 out of the park.
The social activity program today included a Gummi Love Workshop as well as an amazing presentation of one of the fathers of snowboarding: Chuck Barfoot! The snowboard legend presented the history of snowboard design. In his workshop, the participants got to know about how he and Tom Sims constructed their first snowboards in 1978 and how they developed them to the models that the Groms and Rookies ride today.
Check some more pictures by Gustav Ohlsson and Armin Popp from the qualification day of the Groms HERE.