The 2021 Freeride World Tour (FWT21) continues to face unpredictable hardships, most recently due to weather. Thanks to hot winds and lack of fresh snow, the events in Fieberbrunn, Austria have been postponed to a weather window of March 10 through March 17. The FWT also announced that the earliest an event could actually take place is March 12.
The original weather window was scheduled for March 6 through 12.
During late February, the tour kicked off in Andorra, where a Saharan sandstorm and odd storm patterns led to having the first competition a day before the originally scheduled weather window. A second competition at the same venue was held five days later.
The first two tour stops of the season—Hakuba, Japan and Kicking Horse, British Columbia—were cancelled due to the global pandemic. Because of these cancellations, there is still a possibility that two competitions could take place in Austria before the tour rolls to Verbier, Switzerland, for the FWT21 Finals. There will also be a cut in athletes based on accumulated points after the first stop in Fieberbrunn, Austria.
Watch: FWT21 Stop 3 Fieberbrunn Trailer
For the women’s ski field, Frenchwoman Juliette Willmann finished in second place after both events in Andorra and currently sits on top of the overall rankings. Her consistently smooth riding was outmatched by big airs by Norwegian Hedvig Wessel in the first event and Switzerland’s Elisabeth Gerritzen in the second. Both of the winning skiers, who are FWT favorites for this season, either won or fell in Andorra, so Willmann is pretty comfortable in the top spot for now.
The Fieberbrunn event will feature the return of three-time FWT Overall Champion Arianna Tricomi, of Italy, but she will need to make up points quickly to secure a ticket to Verbier.
At this point in the tour, the ski men field is relatively closely ranked and it’s still very much in the air as to who will take the crown of FWT Overall Champion for 2021. France’s Maël Ollivier leads the overall rankings after a second-place and fourth-place finish in Andorra. Alta, Utah resident Andrew Pollard is biting at the Frenchman’s heels, however, after his big win at the second stop of the tour.
The venue at Fieberbrunn, the Wildseeloder Face, is one of the most iconic freeride competition venues on the FWT and has been the location of a number of incredible runs by skiers who risked big tricks and massive cliffs to glory. The most recent was by New Zealand’s Craig Murray, who crashed hard at this venue in 2019, but his run in 2020 was one of the most progressive descents in FWT history. Chances are high there will be some spectacular runs there this year as well.
Watch: Craig Murray’s Winning FWT20 Run in Fieberbrunn, Austria
We will update this page when the first confirmed event date is announced. You can also catch up on the schedule of events on the Freeride World Tour’s website.