FIS Freestyle Ski and Snowboard World Championships a massive success

28 January 2015 16:43
Lisa Zimmermann, ski slopestyle gold medallist
Lisa Zimmermann, ski slopestyle gold medallist -

The 2015 FIS Freestyle Ski and Snowboard World Championships came to a close on Sunday, 25th January in Kreischberg (AUT) after producing 10 days of superlatives for both Freestyle Skiing and Snowboarding in the first-ever combined World Championship for the two disciplines.

It was a historic event of epic proportions with several records created at the Championships, which featured nearly 800 athletes competing in 24 medal events.

“We could not have been more pleased with the outcome of this first combined Freestyle Ski and Snowboard World Championships,” said FIS President Gian Franco Kasper. “The Organising Committee did an amazing job with the massive logistical challenge on top of dealing with a lack of snow in the build-up. The athletes put on a memorable show for both the spectators and fans on site and the worldwide television audience.”

Organising Committee President of the Austrian Ski Association Peter Schröcksnadel and Head of the Local Organising Committee Hello Haas echoed Kasper’s sentiments, “we presented the competitions at the highest levels. It was our aim to provide impressive sports action and we certainly succeeded, and we are proud of this. I believe we have set high standard for future Freestyle Ski and Snowboard World Championships.”

The World Championships concluded with some impressive final numbers, including:

  • Nearly 800 athletes competed with 3,500 persons in total accredited (athletes, officials, media representatives, sponsors, etc.)
  • In total there were 350 accredited media from 19 different nations
  • The World Championships were broadcast on television in 25 countries in addition to Eurosport in Europe, Asia and Australasia and live streaming on the Freestyle and Snowboard YouTube channels
  • 800 volunteers gave their time to make the Championships possible
  • More than 50,000 spectators attended the competitions and side events

On the competition side there were also several highlights including:

  • In Snowboard, the oldest and youngest gold medallists were crowned just two days apart. In the ladies’ slopestyle, 16-year-old Miyabi Onitskuka (JPN) claimed the title while the alpine snowboard races provided the oldest riders ever to take home gold with parallel giant slalom Roland Fischnaller (ITA), 35, becoming the oldest snowboarder ever to win the worlds – a label which lasted only 24 hours as the day after it was time for Claudia Riegler (AUT), 41, to take over the title.
  • Freestyle Skiing also crowned its youngest-ever gold medallist when 17 year-old Fabian Boesch won the gold for Switzerland in slopestyle.
  • Roope Tonteri (FIN) added two medals to his collection becoming the most decorated freestyle snowboarder at the World Championships. The previous two-time World Champion added gold in big air and silver in slopestyle. 
  • The Americans topped the medal table with 11 total medals, followed by Canada with nine and Switzerland with seven.
  • In total an impressively balanced 20 nations took home the 72 medals that were up for grabs with an amazing four continents represented on the podium. The best attended events were men’s and ladies’ snowboard half pipe and the sell-out crowds for Saturday’s men’s and ladies’ big air competitions followed by another sell-out for the closing day ski cross races.