Words and Photos by Will Radula Scott
With one European stop down we had one more to go and Absolut Park in Flachauwinkl, Austria was the place, the last chance for riders to shred it out for a spot and all expenses paid trip to the Grand Finals of the Burton Qualifiers tour in Seven Springs, USA later this month.
We arrived the night before the event having driven a few hours over from Innsbruck to be greeted by the team of Burton Austria in a super nice chalet just at the bottom of the lifts in Flachauwinkl. The new morning we woke to it puking down with snow and the forecast was for the all day. Even so, we got to the ‘Chillhouse’ at the bottom of the park and there were plenty of riders ready to sign up and battle it out for that ultimate prize. Henry Jackson was on the mic to rally the crowds and first up it was the 15 years and Under division to hit up the course first for an hour session. The setup was 4 hits deep with a table top kicker to start, or you could hit a c-rail, followed by a mellow down rail into what Henry described on the mic as big metal testicle. After that you had the option to hit the stair set offering a loads of rails or a wallie/rainbow down rail to finish. Judging they had style lord Dominic Wagner and Marc Schumy who definitely had their work cut out.
The youngsters came out firing through the heavy snowfall and really set the standard of riding for the rest of the day. So much so that some of them could have probably podium’ed in the Open division! Once that session was complete it was straight into the Open division and there was almost 70 riders ready to shred! That’s a huge turn out for a comp! With only 1 hour available for the riders to show the judges that they were worthy for the ticket to the finals the level had to be insane straight out the gate and they didn’t disappoint! In the end it was Maxi Preissinger in the Open division that took home the top spot and all expenses paid trip to AMERICA for the finals! For the 15 Years and Under division it was Kuba Hrones that also will be heading to Seven Springs for the finals. Also, a huge congrats to the runner ups Thom Wijnstra and Gabe Adams in the Open division and Eric Dovjak and Jakob Ganserer for the 15 Years and Under. Valeria Bartual killed it for the girls too.
Recap video by Theo Acworth
The snow didn’t slow down as you can see from the recap edit and so once the competition was over, it was back to shredding some of those freshies! Not before everyone at the top of the park all sending through the setup together one last time. Thanks to Absolut Park and Burton Snowboards for having us out there and we’re hyped to see how our Euro shredders get on in America on the 28th March.
Find out more info on the Burton Qualifiers events and finals HERE.