VALMELENCO, ITA, 19 MAR 2013 – The FIS Freestyle Junior World Championships gets going in Valmelenco, ITA for the second straight year from March 26-31, 2013.
Roughly 375 young athletes from 30 countries will be in attendance to take part in the full FIS Freestyle program – slopestyle, halfpipe, ski cross, aerials, dual moguls, and moguls. With the experience gained from hosting the 2008 Junior World Snowboard Championships, the 2011 Junior World Snowboard World Championships, and last year's freestyle ski Junior World Champs, Valmalenco has built up an excellent freestyle infrastructure, and with a significant snowpack in place this year's event promises to be a highly successful one.
The JWCs are a right of passage for many of the athletes who go on to do great things on the World Cup stage. Skiers like 2013 ski cross 'Rookie of the Year' Viktor Anderson (SWE), halfpipe star Devin Logan (USA), four-time 2012-13 moguls podium placer Bradley Wilson (USA), and countless others have all cut their teeth at their teeth at the JWCs.
And then there are the athletes who are simultaneously stars on the World Cup stage and age-eligible for the JWCs, and who will be in Valmelenco this year looking to make a little history for themselves. Ladies' ski cross, for instance, is going to be quite the learning experience for some young skiers, as both last year's Crystal Globe winner Marielle Thompson (CAN) and this year's (likely) winner, Fanny Smith (SUI) will be in attendance at this year's event.
As is clear by the resort's recent history, Valmelenco is a great supporter of the freestyle movement and a great proving ground for the future stars of freestyle skiing. Andrea Rinaldi, event director for the 2013 freestyle Junior World Championships and the Italian representative on the FIS Freestyle Committee, has shown a strong commitment to extending the scope and influence of freestyle skiing in Italy and far beyond. With a another strong event in Valmelenco, the new crop of freestyle stars will find their platform to shine.