Ryland Bell and Margot Rozies win Freeride World Tour at Kirkwood, CA
The fourth stop of the Freeride World Tour descended upon Kirkwood Mountain Wednesday as 7 women and 14 men battled it out on the famed Cirque venue.
Normally closed to the public, Kirwood’s Cirque is one of the gnarliest venues on the Freeride World Tour. With more cliff drops, couloirs and gullies in a 100-yard area than most mountains have, The Cirque is a perfect venue to watch the best freeriders put it all on the line to be crowned the best in the world.
Despite the less than ideal, bulletproof conditions, the men and women put on a quite a show as a huge crowd of spectators watched from below.
The women would drop first and following her second place finish in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, Margot Rozies would take top honors on the podium with her powerful, smooth run through The Cirque. Dropping in to looker left, Margot kept her speed throughout the entire run with a nice cliff drop in the mid-section then straight lined it to the bottom.
“I was really surprised to win as I really didn’t think I would make it out of bed today,” said Rozies. “I would have liked to have done more, but because I was sick I really just tried to stay on my feet and ride fast and fluid.”
After both the men and women skiers, the snowboard men would drop last in to The Cirque. The men would deal with some of the hardest conditions yet as not only were most of the lines skied out, the sun began to drop leaving a shadow on the majority of the venue.
Tough conditions aside, Ryland Bell, a wild-card entry after Tahoe local, Jeremy Jones, pulled out of the competition would take home the top position and
Ryland’s run was not only fun to watch, but inspiring, as he worked through the venue somehow throwing three 360s into some of the roughest conditions the tour has seen.
“You know, Jeremy (Jones) wasn’t really feeling it today and I can’t blame him as the conditions weren’t the best,” said Bell. “I can’t believe it all came together as I’ve always wanted to win one of these competitions. I’m just so happy right now.”
Men’s Podium: (L-R) Sammy Luebke, Ryland Bell, Emilein Badoux | Photo: Tim Peare
Women’s Podium: (L-R) Elodie Mouthon, Margot Rozies, Shannon Yates | Photo: Tim Peare
With one more stop to go in Fieberbrunn, Austria starting March 7, before the finals in Verbier, Switzerland, tour points leader, Ralph Backstrom, will look to hold on to his 345 point lead over Sammy Luebke who’s making a huge push for the overall leader of the Freeride World Tour.
Stay tuned as we will bring you all the highlights and from the final stops of the Freeride World Tour in the coming weeks.
Jonathan Glass is the Online Editor at Snowboard Magazine. If he says he is going snowboarding it means he's at après, early.
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