WHISTLER, BC, December 28, 2007 — Last April Whistler Blackcomb put up a massive cash prize and hosted one of the most unique women's only competitions ever seen on snow to crown the ultimate Ullr Girl. Fourteen skiers and snowboarders competed for the Ullr Crown but it was Grete Eliassen who skied away with $25,000.
The competition is comprised of participation on ifullrwasagirl.com and then the Finals involving a slopestyle event, a big mountain event, a Superpipe event and Ullr Unleashed, the arts and culture night. This season includes some subtle changes to the format but the spirit of the competition will remain the same — the ultimate mountain girl will take the crown. Athletes must post their profiles at ifullrwasagirl.com for the opportunity to compete but online voting has been nixed. Instead a panel of judges will select up to 12 pro skiers and snowboarders, and four wildcard athletes from profiles on the site to compete at the If Ullr Was A Girl Finals during the TWSSF in April.
"The athletes we select will have demonstrated their passion to us through photos, videos and participation on the site, says Michelle Leroux, If Ullr Was A Girl Judge and PR & Communications Manager for Whistler Blackcomb. "Four girls will win trips to Whistler to compete with the pros and we want to see creativity, enthusiasm and proof that these girls can rip and deserve to compete for $25,000 against some of the best skiers and snowboarders in the world.
The athletes will be chosen on February 29 to compete in the If Ullr Was a Girl Finals at the 2008 Telus World Ski & Snowboard Festival. Profiles, pictures and video can be uploaded to ifullrwasagirl.com now. Four wildcard athletes from the website will win a seven day, six night trip to Whistler to compete in the Finals with 12 invited pros from April 11-20 during the 2008 TELUS World Ski and Snowboard Festival.
"Whistler Blackcomb saw the importance of this competition for women in the ski and snowboard industry and the entire team was thrilled to work on this event again, says Meredith Armstrong, Whistler Blackcomb's Brand Marketing Manager. "This year we decided to work creatively with two partners on the project to ensure we could build and improve upon last year's event."
Watermark Productions, the producers of the TELUS World Ski & Snowboard Festival (TWSSF), has stepped up to take over the management of the event, making the If Ullr Was A Girl competition an official event of the TWSSF. They are also contributing half of the cash prize purse with Whistler Blackcomb making up the remainder. Whistler Blackcomb's creative agency Origin Design + Communications is stepping up with their marketing and communications expertise to ensure the competition and the athletes get the exposure they deserve.
"The Ullr Girl campaign is really close to our hearts," says Origin creative director Danielle Kristmanson. "We worked with Whistler Blackcomb to develop the concept last year and were so happy to see that the girls really embraced it. When the opportunity arose this year for us to be part of the team we jumped at the chance."
Last season Whistler Blackcomb posted 442 online profiles from girls all over North America seeking the Ullr Girl title and the site,ifullrwasagirl.com , generated, on average, 660 user sessions per day with 20 page views per session. Skier Grete Eliassen dominated over a field of 14 skiers and snowboarders and was awarded the prize purse, which she decided to donate in its entirety to charity.