In exiting news for the Latin American freeriding community, Penitentes ski resort in Argentina will host a Freeride World Qualifying (FWQ) event September 4 and 5, 2015. The ski and snowboard event has become a reality after massive storms pounded the Andes in August, producing an excellent snowpack and making hosting this competition a reality.
“We are extremely happy and excited for Penitentes,” says Freeride World Tour Americas Manager Tom Winter. “This is a spot that is a bit off the radar for most, but which features amazing terrain. In fact, we expect to host a 4* event at this resort in the very near future, given the quality of the venues and the enthusiasm of the resort and local freeride community.”
Perched high in the Andes near the charming city of Mendoza, and just across the Chilean border from internationally recognized Portillo, Penitentes is small but punches well above its weight. The mountains surrounding the resort are complex and beautiful, with numerous couloirs and the attractive and interesting “penitenties” rock spires that give the lesser know Argentine ski area its name.
For freeriding, this is an area with huge and untapped potential, long the preserve of savvy locals who now are happy to share their secrets as they welcome athletes to their home in the sky.
“Because of timing and other logistics, this event will feature an ‘open’ registration,” says Winter. “You will not have to be a registered or licensed FWQ athlete to compete, and registration will take place at the event and not via the Member Pro system.” Winter adds that licensed FWQ athletes who do participate will be allocated a 2* FWQ value on their result.
However, says, Winter, athletes should expect a very high level of competition, organization and venues.
“This event features some very challenging venues,” says Winter. “Don’t be fooled. The competition is being organized to a very high standard, the venues are tough, exciting and feature a lot of options for athletes and the passion of the organizers is unmatched.”
There is a limit of 80 athletes allowed to enter the competition and currently there is a good mix of international riders planning on attending, including Brazilian Olympic bordercross rider, Isabela Clark and Colorado, USA local Cynthia Jah’son.
For more information regarding this event in Los Penitentes, open to men and women skiers and snowboarders, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/885705751465822/