2017 NZ Rookie Fest – Report

The NZ Rookie Fest, the first 2017/2018 World Rookie Tour stop, came to an end and the first rookies and groms had been qualified for the World Rookie Finals, to be held in Kitzsteinhorn at Zell am See-Kaprun, Austria, from the 10th to the 15th of April 2018.


Starting with the Halpipe competition, on the 4th of October, Mitchell Davern won his Junior Nationals age category by adding a crippler 720 on the last hit and landing it clean.

“I really wanted to push myself to see if I could get on the podium,” said Mitch. “Everyone was throwing down so I decided to try the crippler. It was a bit risky because I haven’t landed it that much so it was really cool to put down my run.”

Zephyr Lovelock won the Intermediate Snowboard Boys’ age group and impressed the judges by grabbing every spin, tweaking the grabs and maintaining consistent amplitude down the pipe.


The NZ Rookie Fest Champions are:

Mitchell Davern – Rookie Boys

Cool Wakushima – Rookie Girls

Zephyr Lovelock – Grom Boys

Meila Stalker – Grom Girls

Ending with the Slopestyle competion, on the 5th of October, Makayla Kellogg was one of the strongest female snowboarders of the day. Her rails were impressive with a 50-50 180 out, half cab to 180 pretzel, switch 50-50 to backboard, front 50-50 to front board, but the jump line was what secured the gold medal with a cab 5, straight air mute tweak, back 3.


Regarding the Senior Boys Snowboard age group, Lachie Blackmore became the winner thanks to his perfect landings combined with a technical rail line with hardways 270 on the down-flat-down.

“I was pretty nervous coming into today’s competition, there was a bit more pressure with it being a World Rookie Tour event as well.,” said Lachie. “I’m really pleased with my result because it means now I can go and compete in the World Rookie Tour finals in Austria next year.”

The Cardrona NZ Rookie Fest Snowboard Slopestyle Champions are:

Lachie Blackmore – Rookie Boys

Makayla Kellogg – Rookie Girls

Zephyr Lovelock– Grom Boys

New Location with Halfpipe and Slopestyle for the 2017 World Rookie Finals

World Rookie Tour has rarely been easy, mainly thanks to the presence of all the best youth events across the world, but for the 2017 the Black Yeti has decided to raise the bar and reach another goal: to improve the tour that already represent a benchmark on the snowboarding youth competitions, implementing a new format and location for the end of season 2017 World Rookie Finals.

wrt-2016-7-kaprunHere the big news: after nine successful editions of the World Rookie Finals in Ischgl, the grand finale of the 2017 World Rookie Tour will move to Kitzsteinhorn, Zell am See-Kaprun, Austria. The 2017 World Rookie Finals will bring together young riders to identify the top young snowboarders in the world, and to compete together in both halfpipe and slopestyle contests.

To offer a new event format with both slopestyle and halfpipe the World Rookie Tour caravan selected a new location for its “Gran Finale”: Kitzsteinhorn, Zell am See-Kaprun. In fact, Rookies and Groms will compete in halfpipe and slopestyle contests up on the Kitzsteinhorn Mountain; riding in the most progressive halfpipe and slopestyle structures in order to awards the end of season World Rookie Champions.


“According to the format upgraded, 2017 World Rookie Finals are announced in a new location, Kaprun. This decision was taken after careful consideration of all possible options. We wanted both disciplines for the finals and now we have it. I would like to take this opportunity of thanking the Ischgl ski resort and touristic office for the past and fruitful cooperation. Ischgl was a great and very professional host for the last 9 years.” stated Meinhard Trojer, WSF President and World Rookie Tour organizer.

About Snowpark Kitzsteinhorn: The Freestyle Playground
Kitzsteinhorn in Zell am See-Kaprun hosts three world class snowparks and Austrias most delightful superpipe. The sunny, snow-sure location between 2.500 and 2.900 metres, the optimal lift connections and the daily preparation by the motivated local shape crew, make the Snowpark Kitzsteinhorn an ultimate freestyle playground in Austria. The160 metre long and 6,60 metre high Superpipe is one of the highlights.. It pays double for kids and youths to visit the Snowpark Kitzsteinhorn on Saturdays: children and youths between 6 and 19 years old (born 1998 to 2010) only pay 10 Euros for a day ticket, from the 3rd December 2016 until the 29th April 2017. Parks are open from October until May.

Mark the date for the new World Rookie Finals in Kitzsteinhorn, Zell am See-Kaprun: April 04-09, 2017.


2016.17 World Rookie Tour – Calendar
South America Rookie Fest (SS) – Valle Nevado, Chile  21.23 August 2015 – DONE
Australian Rookie Fest (SS) – Thredbo, Australia 1 September 2016 – DELETED
World Rookie Rail Jam (Rail) – Modena, Italy 29.30 October 2016 NEW!
Corvatsch Rookie Fest (SS) – Corvatsch, Swiss 15.18 December 2016
World Rookie Fest (SS) – Livigno, Italy 14.19 January 2017
Bulgarian Rookie Fest (SS + HP) – Pamporovo, Bulgaria 27.29 January 2017
Trentino Rookie Fest (SS) – Monte Bondone, Italy 8.12 February 2017
World Rookie Finals (SS+HP) – Kitzsteinhorn, Zell am See-Kaprun, Austria 04.9 April 2017

If you dream to become a professional snowboarder,
then your future starts from Rookie Fest!