The Cardrona NZ Freestyle Nationals continued today, with the second day of age division competition going down at Cardrona Alpine Resort. Today the programme was flipped – the skiers took on the slopestyle courses while the snowboarders raced down the cross course.
The day was overcast and breezy, but that certainly didn’t deter our first competitors of the day, the U8 and U10 skiers. With smiles on their faces, they dropped into the three jump / two rail course. The judges and spectators were impressed with the huge amount of amplitude that the young athletes were getting on the jumps.
Tatum Ball (9 years old, Nelson) had a standout performance in the girls divisions, impressing the judges with her ability on both the jumps and the rails.
Head Judge Tori Beattie said, “The standout performance in the younger age divisions has to go to Tatum Ball for her super steezy run that had a switch 180, a left three and then a right three on the jumps. She then hit the difficult rainbow rail as well to finish off her run.”
The boys U10 division was a fight for the top spot, with both Izaac Wu (9 years old, Raehiti) and Caspar King (8 years old, Wānaka) scoring in the 90s.
Beattie explained, “The U10 boys division was hotly contended, Izaac took the win with his second run, which included a huge 540 on the third jump.”
In the afternoon the older ski division dropped into Antlers Alley for their slopestyle competition. The course consisted of three medium-sized jumps into two technical rails. The skiers showed they meant business right from the start of training, with huge tricks being thrown down on the comparatively small jumps.
Beattie said “U12 girls skier Maya Broadbent was a standout competitor on the Antlers Alley course today. She had a switch 540 and right 360 on her first run and stepped that up to a huge 720 on her second run. In the U16 boys categories, winner Lucas Ball showed us insane control and style to take the win.”
While the skiers were throwing down tricks on the slopestyle courses, the snowboarders were battling it out on the high-speed cross course.
First the athletes each took an individual timed run through the course, then the times were used to seed the racers into heats, and they raced against each other down the course in a thrilling knock out format.
Most of the age divisions were tightly fought, with athletes going head-to-head and often swapping order numerous times throughout the race.
The Cardrona NZ Freestyle Nationals are an annual event held at Cardrona Alpine Resort. Although it is competitive, the focus of the event is to encourage participation from all age groups, and to bring competitors from around the country together to have fun competing.
Tomorrow is the final day of the Cardrona NZ Freestyle Nationals, and we will be debuting a new event for 2023, a fun and creativity focused Rail Jam. This format is a lot freer than traditional competition, allowing the athletes to hike and hit two rails as many times as they can in the allocated time window.
5 months ago