This week the Telus World Ski and Snowboard Festival released the formats and field sizes for both the World Skiing Invitational and World Snowboard Invitational. The list of qualifiers and confirmed athletes will be posted on March 15.
The qualifier spots for both ski and snowboard events were booked early, and there are long waiting lists of athletes if any of the qualified athletes drop out before the competition.
Both the World Skiing Invitational and World Snowboard Invitational will overlap this year, with qualifiers and finals taking place on the same days. In previous years, each event was given its own weekend.
World Snowboarding Invitational
The World Snowboarding Invitational will run April 12-16, with invites going out to the top pro riders in the world for the $50,000 slopestyle and Superpipe competitions.
The slopestyle qualifier gets underway on April 13 with 30 men and 15 women competing. Each qualifier will get two runs, with the best run counting. The top seven men and three women will advance to the finals the next day against the 17 pro men and nine pro women invited to the contest.
In the finals, competitors will get two runs, with the top five men and top three women advancing to a one-run Super Final. There will also be a half-hour wall riding session that will be judged by the athletes themselves.
There is no qualifier event for the Superpipe Finals. Instead, 30 men and 20 women will receive invitations to compete in the event in a jam-session format where each rider is guaranteed at least six runs. Only the best run will count at the end of the hour.
The Superpipe Finals will once again be followed by the athlete-judged SuperHit contest, where riders cast their votes for the athlete who lands the best trick in the half hour time period.
World Skiing Invitational
The World Skiing Invitational is similar to the World Snowboarding Invitational with a $50,000 prize purse and slopestyle and Superpipe events.
The slopestyle qualifier, which takes place on April 13, will be open to 40 men and use a two-run format. The top seven will advance to the finals to face 13 invited pros. Although there isnt a womens qualifier there will be a 10-competitor womens slopestyle final.
The top five men and three women will advanced to the one-run Super Final, which will be followed by the skiers wall riding session.
Unlike the Snowboard Invitational, there will be a skier qualifier for the Superpipe event on April 16 with 60 men and 10 women taking part. The top 10 men and three women will advance to the Superpipe Finals on April 16. It will be a one-hour jam event, followed by a half-hour SuperHit contest judged by the athletes.
For more information or a list of competitors, visit www.whistler2005.com.