As you may have noticed, last week the TTR drew event organisers, industry silverbacks, media moguls and more to Barcelona for their annual General Assembly. The most interesting upshoot was the announcement of the World Snowboard Championships that will go down once every four years, counterbalancing the Olympic cycle. So 2012 sees the first World Snowboarding Championships (proposed for Oslo, Norway), 2014 will be the Olympics in Sotchi, 2016 another WSC and so on.
To make sure you're kept in the loop, here's the skinny on that and the other moves that went down...
The annual TTR General Assembly 2010 took place from May 21st to 22nd, with a great turnout of snowboard sport representatives from around the globe who came together in Barcelona, Spain, to discuss the future of competitive snowboarding. For the second consecutive year, the annual meeting was held together with the World Snowboard Federation (WSF). Open workshops and meetings were held over a two day period in which a multitude of important topics were discussed between TTR and WSF members, snowboard industry representatives and media representatives with the objective to establish measures that will push the progression of competitive freestyle snowboarding and help take the sport to the next level.
Some of the key changes made for the upcoming season, as well as the future of the Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour in general, are outlined below:
World Snowboarding Championships taking snowboarding a step further
Representatives of TTR Pro Snowboarding and the World Snowboard Federation jointly developed the concept of a new world-class snowboarding event over the past two years and it was voted to proceed with planning the World Snowboarding Championships. The World Snowboarding Championships will be held every four years and will feature men’s and women’s halfpipe and slopestyle disciplines. The first event is planned for the 2011/2012 season and will create an environment for the best freestyle riders to compete for world snowboarding champion titles in both halfpipe and slopestyle formats. With a unanimous vote at the TTR General Assembly 2010, the application of a Norwegian consortium to host the first event of its kind in Oslo in 2012 has been accepted by the TTR members. The final decision whether the event will take place is pending approval by the Norwegian Ministry of the Environment for the expansion plans of the event arena at Tryvann Vinterpark.
Preparations towards the World Snowboarding Championships
In preparation for a legitimate qualification system for the World Snowboarding Championship in 2012, the TTR has decided to introduce separate world rankings for halfpipe/quarterpipe and slopestyle/big air events. The two new lists will be generated for the combined formats in addition to the World Tour Rankings and will serve for qualification purposes. Further details on the concept will be released in the near future.
More value for riders ranked on the World Rankings
In an effort to add additional benefits for riders ranked on the World Rankings and provide more value to lower level events, the TTR Board of Directors has accepted a proposal to exclusively use the TTR World Rankings to select riders for all open spots in open qualifications at 5 and 6Star level events on the tour.
Improved communication with riders
As a rider-driven organization, it is one of TTR’s main objectives to communicate effectively with the athletes to inform them about important topics as well as supplying them with all relevant event information. In order to do so, TTR will be improving its rider hospitality services in a joint effort with the events to ensure a good communication flow between all parties.
A stronger women’s leg on the TTR Tour
Developing women’s snowboarding in co-operation with WSF is a project that aims to strengthen the women’s leg of the Swatch TTR Tour and to create more coverage for women athletes. By building up the women’s events and strengthening the female portion of mixed-gender events, as well as ramping up the publicity of the women on the TTR Tour, WSF and TTR hope to attract more female riders to join the tour and create a better opportunity for the progression of the female side of the sport. The TTR will also look into a proposal to adapt the point scale for women in the next months.
These changes and initiatives were discussed and approved by the TTR members and the TTR Board of Directors during the Annual General Meeting in Barcelona.