James ‘Woodsy’ Woods opens his 2018/19 World Cup campaign in New Zealand tomorrow and will be hoping to continue a great series of British performances in the southern hemisphere over the last month.

Ski big air World Cup qualifying takes place tomorrow at Cardrona ahead of the final on Friday. The resort continues to host the Winter Games NZ which incorporated the Freeski and Snowboard World Junior Championships.

The entry list for the men’s ski big air features a host of Olympic, World Cup and X-Games stars, however Woodsy’s credentials stack up with the best in the world. From his last two visits to the X-Games in Aspen, Woodsy has come away with a victory (2017) and bronze medal (2018) from the big air events.

While most of the world’s best freestyle skiers avoided big air World Cups last year as it was not an Olympic event, more will now be putting a dedicated focus on the discipline following its inclusion in the Beijing 2022 program. Since making his first appearance in February 2016, Woodsy has competed in just one of the last eight big air World Cups.

Great month down under

Woodsy is the next British athlete to enter the competitive southern hemisphere season, one which has brought fabulous results across the board.

At the Freeski & Snowboard Junior World Championships in Cardrona, Britain registered 12 top ten performances including ski cross medals to Ollie Davies (1st) and Elliane Hall (3rd).

Freestyle skiers Kirsty Muir (big air/halfpipe/slopestyle) and Connie Brogden (halfpipe/slopestyle) scored top tens in each of their events, while Sam Ward (halfpipe), Zoe Atkin (halfpipe), Emma Peters (ski cross), Zoe Winthrop (ski cross) and Faith Davie (ski cross) also finished with top ten results.

The Australia-New Zealand Cup alpine events in Cardrona last week also formed part of the Winter Games NZ with the British women’s contingent scoring some great results, led by Olympians Charlie Guest who won a slalom event and Alex Tilley who was second in a giant slalom race. Guest scored a further top five in another slalom race with Jess Anderson, Reece Bell and Sarah Woodward all earning top 10 results.

Earlier in the month, Bell was on the A-NZ Cup slalom podium at Mt Hotham in Australia where Anderson, Woodward and Daisi Daniels all earned top 10 results.

Last week Will Feneley earned an A-NZ Cup moguls top 10 at Perisher.

Prior to the World Juniors, ski cross athletes Hall, Peters, Winthrop and Davie scored two A-NZ Cup top 10 results each at Falls Creek, and Davie added a third place at Mt Hotham today.

On top of those results, alpine skiers Soneva Scott, Kathryn Bailey, Owen Vinter, Samuel Todd-Saunders, Jake Doyle, Olivia Foster and Diaco Abrishami have all earned FIS race top 10s in Australia and New Zealand while Edouard Guigonnet finished inside the top 10 at a Entry League FIS race in Argentina.

And it hasn’t just been the athletes getting the job done with new Europa Cup ski and snowboard cross coach Theo Cheli finishing fourth in yesterday’s Freeride World Qualifier 2* at the Winter Games NZ, with the 4* event still to come.


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