Over 80 representatives from different realms of the snowboard industry gathered together on May 29th and 30th, 2009 in Innsbruck, Austria for the TTR General Assembly 2009. Over the two days, members of the Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour, the World Snowboard Federation and representatives from snowboard media outlets and snowboard brands voiced their thoughts, concerns and ideas in workshops and meetings to establish measures that will push the progression of competitive freestyle snowboarding and help take the sport to the next level.
The series of workshops held during the General Assembly provided an open forum for constructive discussions on the current state of snowboarding in general. The workshops generated some great dialogue on varying topics including how national snowboard federations can work together throughout the world and better work in collaboration with independent events, the importance of strengthening the rookie/amateur level of the TTR Tour and how competitive freestyle snowboarding is seen through the eyes of media. Ultimately, the workshops were a great opportunity to put the competitive freestyle snowboard world under a magnifying glass and the outcome will help to better organize the sport of snowboarding on a global level.
Some of the key changes made for the 2009/2010 Swatch TTR World Tour season are outlined below.
As a rider-driven organization, the TTR is trying to best accommodate riders in the extremely busy 2009/2010 Olympic season by reducing the number of required TTR results from seven to six results. This will allow riders to work Olympic qualification events, the Olympic Games and TTR events into their schedules allowing them to focus on both the Olympics and the TTR tour.
Strengthening the amateur leg of the TTR tour
For the 2009/2010 season, the TTR Tour and the WSF will reduce event fees and prize money requirements for 1Star – 4Star events. This change aims to encourage more events to join the TTR and to allow these events to operate more freely with less stress on meeting TTR fee or prize money requirements. In addition, the “event profiles” section of ttrworldtour.com will be opened up to 1Star – 3Star events so they have the opportunity to present their event under the TTR umbrella.
Creating a more transparent qualification system for open events
The TTR will introduce a qualification system for open events (such as the Burton European Open, O’Neill Evolution, Champs Open and Burton US Open), which will give the Top 250 male and Top 125 female riders on the TTR World Ranking List priority access when registering for open events until a certain quota is filled. Riders will still need to register by the appropriate event registration deadline to ensure they can take advantage of their priority access.
Broad informational database for media
With the Olympic season quickly approaching, the Swatch TTR will introduce a web-based information database containing all riders’ TTR results and all major non-TTR event results reaching back to 1998. TTR is introducing this database in an effort to provide media covering Olympic qualifications and the Olympic Games a complete overview of a rider’s achievements without limitations to one organization.
These changes and initiatives were unanimously approved by all Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour members at the General Assembly held on May 30th, 2009.
ABOUT SWATCH TTR:
Founded by Terje Haakonsen and industry innovators in 2002, the Swatch Ticket To Ride (TTR) World Snowboard Tour is a non-profit, rider-driven organization with the mission “to create the highest quality competitive snowboard environment in the world, using authenticity, accessibility, innovation as guiding principles”. Since its foundation, the Swatch TTR Tour has been developing into the most exposed snowboard tour worldwide featuring global grass root and key independent freestyle snowboarding events over a ten-month period from Southern to Northern Hemisphere locations. Events are rated via a 1-through-6Star system, with points allocated accordingly, a 6Star event holds the highest. Any rider participating in these events, from up-and-coming to professional talent, earns ranking points and a position on the SWATCH TTR World Ranking List. The top male and female rider based on an average of their best eight results of the season (5+1 system) is crowned Swatch TTR World Snowboard Tour Champion. www.ttrworldtour.com
ABOUT THE WORLD SNOWBOARD FEDERATION
WSF is the only international organisation exclusively working to develop and taking care for the sport of snowboard at all levels including, competitions and education, disable and adaptive snowboarding, snowboard activities for riders of any age. WSF represent a network of national snowboard associations which cooperate world wide for the sport development. Members find in WSF a source of inspiration and support at their activities. WSF can create added value for everybody involved in snowboard on national level and can offer ideas, manuals and initiatives as a result of being together in one organization with the same goal: progression of snowboarding at all levels. www.worldsnowboardfederation.org