Last year, female skiers represented at only one stop on the Winter Dew Tour. This winter, thanks to some nudging from female athletes like Jen Hudak and Sarah Burke, the womens presence will be increased.
With the third season of the tour about to kick-off, the Breckenridge, Colo. and Snowbasin, Utah stops will host 25 women skiers competing in both pipe and slopestyle. And unlike previous years, where the competitions were invite-only, these will be open events allowing new girls to get some national attention and prove themselves. The Killington, Vermont, stop of the Dew Tour is the only one that will not feature women freeskiers.
Dew Tour general manager Chris Prybylo says he sat down with five-time X Games medalist Jen Hudak, who placed second in halfpipe at the 2010 Dew Tour at Snowbasin, to develop a women’s program that worked for the athletes and the event organizers.
Hudak says the meeting helped bridge a communication gap. “Most of the girls felt put off by Dew Tour because we were left to assume that they didn’t think we were worthy,” Hudak told ESPN. “But meeting with Chris put all of those fears to rest. He expressed that he wants to work with us and wants to help the sport grow, and that has been the case all along. We are all very excited, and it’s great to know that we are working toward the same goal.
The Tour begins at Breckenridge Ski Resort in Breckenridge, Colo., Dec. 16-19, 2010, continues to new host site Killington Resort, in Killington, Vt., Jan.20-23, 2011 and concludes with the Toyota Championship at Snowbasin, a Sun Valley Resort, in Ogden, Utah, Feb. 10-13, 2011.
With the pipe elevated to 22 feet at the final two tour stops, fans can expect to see some awesome amplitude and riding.
Athletes compete for the highly coveted Dew Cup that will be awarded at the Toyota Championship at the tour’s last stop in Snowbasin. The 2009-10 Dew Cup champions include Jamie Anderson (Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle), and Kaitlyn Farrington (Women’s Snowboard Superpipe).