Boarder Lines - Huge Expansion in 2016!
North American IFSA & FWQ QUICK LOOK
2015-2016 Big Mountain Competitive Opportunities for the Boarder Community
The International Freeskiers and Snowboarders Association (IFSA) is the primary sanctioning, judging, and ranking organization for junior and adult big mountain freeride events in North America. Operating in partnership with the Freeride World Tour (FWT) and valued event hosts, the IFSA has built a network of events that enable junior and adult athletes to compete and qualify on regional, national, and world stages.
Build the largest Big Mountain Freeride Series for the snowboard community in North America and the world!
How we are doing it?
The phenomenal growth of Freeride in North America has already allowed us to build a huge competitive series. Consider this:
- 40+ North American resort partners and growing - 900% growth over 4 years
- 70+ IFSA sanctioned competitions and growing - 1,500% growth over 4 years
These events already have designated boarder divisions, but we are committed to building higher participation. Our huge existing footprint provides big line competitions all over the US and Canada. New for the 2015-16 season, we have set start list allocations for boarder divisions to insure a truly competitive depth of field and immediate accessibility for riders at all US events.
- World’s Largest Big Mountain Freeride Series!
- 70+ freeride events @ 40+ North American resorts
- Ages: U12, 12-14, 15-18, & adult
- Only route to the Freeride World Tour
- Open to team and indy riders
- Partner events in Europe, Chile, Argentina, Japan & New Zealand
- 2016 will be our biggest season ever!
What is Freeride and how is it judged?
Freeriders are scored based on line choice, fluidity, technique, control, and style as they navigate through natural terrain featuring trees, steeps, cliffs, chutes, drops and gullies where they are rewarded for using the features creatively. Learn more about the judging criteria HERE.
Why RIDE with the IFSA?
1. Meet new people with the same interests.
2. Have the opportunity to ride across the country.
3. Improve your overall riding ability no matter what your background in riding is.
4. Compete in a chill and relaxing environment without pressure.
EVENT OVERVIEW - IFSA North American Junior Freeride Series (Riders aged U12, 12-14, 15-18)
Featuring the best junior big-mountain skiers and snowboarders in North America, the IFSA North American Junior Freeride Series will include more than 50 competitive opportunities during the 2015-16 season. These events provide developing riders the chance to hone their skills and develop their unique style in a big mountain environment while earning valuable points within the IFSA North American ranking. Series events are classified as regional, national, or championships. Event participants include both independent riders and team riders traveling with a team and coach. These events place priorities on safety protocols and smart decision-making prior to and during all freeride events. This design is challenging and fun, but also provides safe competitive opportunities for the junior community.
Since 2015, the junior freeride system now culminates in the Junior World Freeride Championships. As a result of the 2014 partnership of the IFSA and FWT, the top finishers from the North American Junior Freeride Series can qualify for this event and represent North American junior freeride on a world stage.
The IFSA currently has over 1,600 engaged junior athletes in North America. With almost 500 new athletes entering the IFSA junior competitive landscape in 2015, this growth reflects the increasing momentum of freeride competition in North America as well as the potential for growth with existing and future event partners.
Event Overview - The Freeride World Tour (FWT) and Freeride World Tour Qualifying (FWQ) System ( Riders 18+)
As riders enter the adult freeride arena, qualification for the Freeride World Tour (FWT) is many athletes' ultimate goal. Featuring the top 60-70 adult (18 and older) big-mountain skiers and snowboarders on the planet, the FWT currently consists of five stops including Verbier, Alaska, and Chamonix. The only way athletes can qualify for a sponsored spot on the FWT is to compete and succeed in Freeride World Tour Qualifying (FWQ) events.
In order to provide points towards qualification, FWQ events are ranked from 1* to 4* depending upon the type and difficulty of each venue. Similar to the Junior Freeride Series, host resorts own and operate their own FWQ events, with support and sanctioning from the IFSA and Freeride World Tour. Currently there are more than 50 Freeride World Tour Qualifying events (FWQ) globally. Almost 2000 athletes have a FWQ competition license and these individuals are highly motivated and actively seeking opportunities to compete, particularly in the Americas. While the FWQ is certainly the pathway to the FWT, it's also a great community of young adult freeriders looking for weekend fun with some of the most awesome riders in snowsports.
EVENT LEVELS & DIVISIONS
North American Junior Freeride Series Event
- Regional: 60-140 participants, entry-level competition for new athletes and those who prefer to compete locally
- National: 110-180 participants, high-level competition primarily for experienced athletes
- Championship: limited to 180 participants, only the highest level of qualifying athletes (less than 10% of the total athlete pool)
- Athlete Divisions: U12, 12-14, and 15-18; skiers and snowboarders; men and women. Rankings are tracked by Regional finishes, National finishes, and overall point totals.
Freeride World Qualifier Events
- Collegiate Series: 80-120 participants per event. A pilot series in 2015, this series was designed to meet the demand from collegiate athletes to compete for their schools and earn FWQ points (2*). Open to all athletes 18-24 years of age, or full time students.
- FWQ: 80-120 participants per event. Ranked as 1*, 2*, 3*, & 4* events, points are awarded relative to each event level. 1* and 2* events are open to all adult competitors. 3* and 4* events are open to qualifying riders.
- Athlete Divisions: 18 years and up, skiers and snowboarders, men and women
Questions & More Info
2015-16 Junior Event Schedule (what's available now, more to come)
2015-16 Adult North American FWQ Schedule (to be released September 22th)
2014-15 Junior Rankings
2014-15 Adult Rankings
Handbook and Guidelines