Photo Credit: Dave Holland
(ISN) – Whistler, BC – The final stop of the 2014-2015 season makes its way to Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort in Whistler, BC, for our halfpipe and slopestyle athletes.
From April 10-13, the World Ski and Snowboard Festival (WSSF) presents the Association of Freeskiing Professionals (AFP) World Tour Finals at the World Skiing Invitational – featuring Halfpipe, Slopestyle and Big Air.
“It’s a great way to finish the year at home after a long season travelling,” said High Performance Director David Mirota. “For many of our national team athletes, Whistler is their second home, so it’s a great opportunity to showcase their latest skills in front of their supporters.”
A native of British Colombia and enjoying a breakout season, Cassie Sharpe is among many of the athletes looking forward to closing out the season in Canada in front of supporters and friendly faces.
“I’m really excited to be competing on home turf,” added Sharpe. “Having my family (mom, dad and brother) and a couple of my friends from Vancouver Island out to watch the competition means the world to me. It’ll be the first time some of my friends see me compete in real life! It is awesome to have a contest so close to home and be able to share my passion with them.”
Sharpe and the halfpipe team are coming off a training camp in Calgary at Winsport Canada’s Canada Olympic Park. It was an opportunity for athletes to refine their skills and learn new tricks at a world-class facility.
“The Calgary training camp was incredible,” said Sharpe. “The pipe was perfect each day and everyone was stoked to be there, which makes everything awesome. I learned a lot of new tricks and perfected some others. I can’t wait to debut a couple at the World Ski and Snowboard Festival.”
The event is scheduled to open this Friday at 10:15 a.m PDT with the men’s slopestyle elimination, followed by the women’s and men’s slopestyle final beginning at 2 p.m.
“This year was by a mile my best one so far,” said slopestyle skier Alex Bellemare. “I won third at X Games and then snagged 2nd in Big Air at the Air and Style event a few weeks later. I followed that up with a third place in France on the SFR tour. So this year has been a blast so far! I would just love to put down a good run to my feet, to conclude on a good note such good year.”
On Saturday, the Big Air event will take place followed by a full day of the halfpipe competition on Sunday.
Halfpipe Athletes Competing:
Men – Mike Riddle (Sherwood Park, AB), Justin Dorey (Vernon, BC), Simon d’Artois (Whistler, BC), Kris Atkinson (Calgary, AB), Matt Margetts (Penticton, BC), Noah Bowman (Calgary, AB)
Women – Keltie Hansen (Edmonton, AB) and Cassie Sharpe (Comox, BC), Megan Gunning (Calgary, AB)
Slopestyle Athletes Competing:
Men – Alex Bellemare (Saint-Boniface, QC), Evan McEachran (Oakville, ON), Noah Morrison (Vernon, BC), Taylor Wilson (Whistler, BC – National Institute Team), Kristaps Thompson (Montreal West, QC – National Institute Team), Reid McEachran (Oakville, ON – National Institute Team)
Women – Kim Lamarre (Lac-Beauport, QC), Nikki Blackall (Barrie, ON), Yuki Tsubota (Whistler, BC)