THE SEASON OPENER OF THE 2017 SWATCH FREERIDE WORLD TOUR IN CHAMONIX-MONT-BLANC TO BE STAGED IN VALLNORD-ARCALÍS, ANDORRA
In order to guarantee safe conditions for all competitors, event organizers have decided to reschedule the competition to take place alongside the second stop of the FWT.
After careful assessment, local guides and event organizers have determined that due to safety concerns, the fifty-two competitors scheduled to open the season in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc will face off in Vallnord-Arcalís, Andorra. Two competitions will take place at the Andorran ski resort during the event window from February 9-16.
FWT guides attempted to locate a competition face outside of the ski areas on a very remote venue only accessible by foot. Despite a sufficient quantity of snow in region, strong winds have eliminated every possible option for a competition on an out-of-bounds venue in safe snow conditions in the Mont Blanc Valley as well as potential neighboring venues.
Organizers accepted the fact that conditions were difficult in the mountains.By hosting back-to-back events in Andorra, the FWT aims to guarantee three competitive stops before the first round of qualification cuts are made after Fieberbrunn, Austria.
Event organizers have combined events three times in the past ten years due to difficult snow conditions and/or safety concerns. The upcoming event will be the second time Vallnord-Arcalís hosts a combined contest due to the multiple options for competition sites situated around the ski resort.
Despite the rescheduling of the event, music, après ski activities, and ski and snowboard tests still took place this weekend in the town of Chamonix. In addition, all FWT athletes attended a safety workshop in the coming days to ensure the highest level of safety during the 2017 season.