SBX World Cup season to open in Argentina
While the freestyle snowboarders are currently down under for their first slopestyle and halfpipe World Cup events, the world's best boardercross athletes have also traveled to the Southern hemisphere to kick off their season.
Cerro Catedral will host back-to-back races from September 8 to 10, 2017, on a 1,000 metres long technical course designed and built by Todd Main and the local shaper crew led by Philou Gillot.
The Patagonian resort therefore becomes the second ever in Argentina to organise a FIS Snowboard World Cup event since snowboard cross races had been staged in Bariloche back in 2008 and 2009.
As the Olympic winter gets underway in South America, almost every national team had set up camps in Argentina and Chile the weeks before to get back into contest mode.
But as there haven't been that many real form tests yet, the number of riders on the to-watch-list is pretty big as many athletes have the skills to give it a shot for the podium.
One of them is Alex Pullin (AUS). The two-time world champion was one of the last riders to jump on a plane to Argentina after he had got his season underway back home winning the Australian New Zealand Cup tour.
In addition, Markus Schairer (AUT) also seems to be in good shape as the 2009 world champion came out successful of the recent Corralco (CHI) South American Cup leaving his fellow team members, the Swiss squad and the Argentinian World Cup roster behind.
Olympic champion and defending World Cup title winner Pierre Vaultier (FRA) who did win both World Cup races staged in Argentina so far, Omar Visintin (ITA) and Hagen Kearney (USA) – who all had a great 2017 season – are also riders with the right skill set for a technical course.
Over in the women's event, it's most likely that the riders who dominated the last season should be the ones again to battle for the win.
Besides five-time world champion Lindsey Jacobellis (USA), 214 Soch Gold medallist Eva Samkova (CZE), who won the Crystal Globe in style last year as well as Michela Moioli (ITA) are serious podium threats.
In addition, the French armada which includes the likes of Chloe Trespeuch, Nelly Moenne Loccoz and Charlotte Bankes will most certainly play a major role in the hunt for World Cup points, too.
Thursday, Sep 8: Qualifiers SBX 1 at 10:30 AM local time
Friday, Sep 9: Finals SBX 1 at 12 PM local time (5 PM CET)
Saturday, Sep 10: Qualifiers SBX 2 at 9 AM local time, finals at 1 PM local time (6 PM CET)
The latest time schedule for the Cerro Catedral World Cup weekend is available online.