The third stop of this season’s Freeride World Tour (FWT), “Hold The Line,” wrapped up this weekend. One of the most technical and challenging venues on the calendar, combined with the boiling pressure for crucial leaderboard points, were the ingredients for another stellar line-up of performances by the world’s best freeriders on a picture perfect day in Fieberbrunn, Austria.
With the legendary “Wildseeloder” venue blanketed under blue skies and cold fresh snow, the intrepid roster of athletes wasted no time in choosing big lines and creative features hoping to finish the day standing in the winners' circle. Here’s a look at what went down…
Victor de Le Rue (FRA-1st Place) charged into the top of the venue throwing a big 360 over tons of exposure, which he followed by a huge air, another 360 and then yet another 360 to cap off an amazing run. Dave Baird (USA-2nd Place) wowed judges and viewers with a beautiful sequence of two huge back-to-back airs at the top of the venue, followed by smooth riding and a couple more nice airs through the finish. Sammy Luebke (USA-3rd Place) had a hard charging run carrying tons of speed through the top and stuck a nicely floated 360 in the middle section for a solid run.
“I was really impressed by everyone’s runs, hitting so many features, so I added a few features to my run and I ended up first! I’m super stoked.” – Victor de Le Rue
Markus Eder (ITA-1st Place) continued his 2019 world title campaign with a beautifully floated 360 at the top of the venue with tons of exposure below, and a fast and smooth middle section with plenty more air time, a very creative floaty transfer, and a massive backflip at the bottom for another well-deserved win. Andrew Pollard (USA-2nd Place) had a solid run with a smooth step-up 360, a nicely floated cork 360 and smooth skiing from top-to-bottom. Léo Slemett (FRA-3rd Place), the last rider to go, opened up a new, very steep and exposed line at the top by sticking a huge double air, which he followed by fast riding through the middle and a beautiful backflip at the bottom for a strong run.
“Amazing moment and I’m really happy. It’s the first time in three years of competing here that I was able to do the line I wanted. It’s crazy to have had three good comps in a row!” – Markus Eder
Hedvig Wessel (NOR-1st Place) took the win by pointing her skis into a big and fast top air, then stomped a smooth middle air, and cemented her spot on top of the podium with a huge backflip at the bottom. Jacqueline Pollard (USA-2nd Place) stuck airs in every part of the venue and applied her big mountain style and smooth technique to a great run overall. Elisabeth Gerritzen (SUI-3rd Place) strung together smooth airs all the way down the mountain for a highly fluid run.
“Being able to be on top of these amazing mountains gives me so much energy. I’m really thankful to be on the Freeride World Tour, and to ski with these amazing girls. I did the line I wanted and a backflip so I’m really happy.” – Hedvig Wessel
Marion Haerty (FRA-1st Place) was the last rider to go for the day and did not disappoint with a steep and technical top section, multiple linked airs through the middle and two clean bottom airs to take the win and further cement her spot in the overall rankings. Anna Orlova (RUS-2nd Place) chose a very technical line at the top, which she executed smoothly, followed by a couple of smooth airs. Erika Vikander (USA-3rd Place) had a smooth run with nice looking surf slash style and a clean air at the bottom.
“I saw that line last year and really wanted to do it. I’m super stoked, feel so emotional right now and confident for the next one.” – Marion Haerty
Relive all of the event’s action at freeridewordtour.com and by watching the replay below, and be sure to follow the Freeride World Tour’s social media channels (@freerideworldtour) for rider news and competition updates as the 2019 FWT heads to Andorra for “Crunch Time.”