Kirschbaum Battle: Hot Freestyle Firework

Perfect snowpark conditions in the ‘stanton park’ of the QParks house, a superb spring weather and around 90 motivated riders added up to a magnificent freestyle contest last Saturday.

Boarder am Arlberg.  Foto: Simon Van HalSt. Anton at the Arlberg may be more famous for its powder runs and thus as a freeriding destination among winter-sports enthusiasts. However, on the last Saturday, the area stood totally under the sign of the freestyle scene and with the Kirschbaum Battle in the brand-new `stanton park´ is has shown that region has a lot to offer to the fans of “railslides” and “airs”.

Headshaper René Friedl and his team have done a splendid job and in the same fashion the whole area presented itself from its best side, which certainly fell back on the numerous rider’s motivation from the beginning in the morning. Due to the high number of registrations, the qualification went off in two rating rounds. The high level of the freeskiers was especially remarkable and it was rather tough to stand one’s ground among the starting list of 60 riders! Already in the preliminary round the audience was able to see some “double inverted” jumps over the contest line which comprised a butterbox made of snow and a following kicker with 3 jumps (17m, 12m and 6m table).

After the gripping preliminary round, the contest approached its climax. Between two and eight qualificants of the categories freeski, snowboard and rookies made it into the renowned Kirschbaum Battle final, where the battle for honor and EUR 2000,- could start off in direct duels men vs. men and girls vs. girls!

Finally Marion Holzmann (19, AUT) of the Headbud Crew came out on top of the largest field of freeskiers at the men before Sebastian Geiger (18 years, GER) of the Armada team and Raphael Schweiger (21 years, AUT) of the Scott team. At the girls local heroine Pia Pangratz (14) from the SCA Newschool team before Elisabeth Gram (13) and team colleague Claudia Raffeiner (14), all from Austria. The rookies even impressed the main organizer Michael Ess: “It’s impressive how the young freestylers present themselves and it stands for the talented rookie scene that an eleven year old took the first place in the end!” In the end, Dominik Rangger (11) won before David Hohenegg (15) and Max Hafele (13), all from Austria.

At the snowboarders the contest passed off in the same suspenseful manner. Noticeable happy about the prize money, Michael Macho (22, AUT) took the podium with a 720 tailgrab ahead of Michael Lantz (20) from Sweden and multi-talented QParks headshaper René Friedl (23). In the rookie’s rating the 13-year-old Tschoder Roland prevailed and left Geiger Christian and Sandro Ladner, both are 15 and from Austria, behind. At the females, the Swedish Anna Engstrand (20) convince the judges, followed by the 15-year-old Austrians Birgit Rofner and Svenja Schalllner.

In the aftermath of a long and exciting contest day, the next meeting point constituted the freeride & lifestyle shop “Kirschbaum”, where the community let the day pass at cool drinks and the notorious “Battle-Sausages”, just to get to the prize-giving afterwards.
According to the event team, it was the “most ingenious battle of all years”. In the same style, the battle was rounded by the after party in the arl.rock. The outstanding performances, organization and happy faces all around proved that the contest has grown to a fixed star within the local freestyle community.  In this respect, everybody is able to look forward to the Kirschbaum Battle 2011 in the `stanton park´powered by QParks!
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