With a New Year comes a new update on the AFP World Tour Rankings, as the first two events of 2015 (the second stop of the Bronze-ranked USASA Rocky Mountain Series at Copper Mountain, Colorado (Halfpipe & Slopestyle), and the first of four stops of the Gold-ranked SFR Tour in Val Thorens, France (Slopestyle)) took place this past weekend. Here's a look at how they affected the rankings…
Fabian Bosch (2nd), Oscar Wester (1st), Jesper Tjader (3rd) at the SFR Tour.
In Men's Slopestyle, Ethan Swadburg picked up the win at the USASA Rocky Mountain Series, which has allowed to jump from 60th to 57th, Sammy Schuling took second to get on the board in 265th, and just behind him in third was Payton McElhiney, who is now in 254th. At the SFR Tour, Oscar Wester continued his stellar start to the season by claiming victory, which has moved him from 7th to 5th, Fabian Bosch proved yet again that he's one to watch by scoring second and ascending from 79th to 69th, and the incomparable Jesper Tjader is now in 7th after placing third. Also worth noting is the red-hot Andri Ragettli jumping seven spots, from 19th to 12th, after landing in fourth, and the veteran Matt Walker creeping into the top 10 after finishing fifth.
Coline Ballet-Baz (2nd), Kelly Sildaru (1st), Giulia Tanno (3rd) at the SFR Tour.
In Women's Slopestyle, Bridget O'Brien, Paula Cooper and Rebecca Mase remain in 116th, 124th and 128th, respectively, after placing first, second and third at the USASA Rocky Mountain Series, while across the pond at the SFR Tour, Kelly Sildaru continued her rise to glory by taking the top spot, which moves her nine spots up, from 15th to 6th. In second was Coline Ballet-Baz, who is up 19 spots, from 47th to 28th, while Giulia Tanno is up six, from 43rd to 37th, after rounding out the podium in third.
In Men's Halfpipe, New Zealand's Nico Porteous was awarded the first victory of his career at the USASA Rocky Mountain Series to make a massive ascent of 30 spots, from 103rd to 73rd, Payton McElhiney made a significant leap of his own from 117th to 87th after placing second, and Cal Carson is up 12 spots, from 56th to 44th, thanks to taking third.
In Women's Halfpipe, Isabelle Hansen continues to climb the rankings by moving from 17th to 15th after taking the top spot at the USASA Rocky Mountain Series, Paul Cooper picked up her second podium appearance of the weekend by once again placing second, which has given her a big bump from 82nd to 43rd, and Brittany Hawes took third for the second time in a row on this year's USASA Rocky Mountain Series to move from 36th to 27th.
On the Men's Overall Rankings, the only significant changes to report (aside from the general fluctuations due to the 52-week rolling system) are Oscar Wester moving from 13th to 11th and Fabian Bosch from 22nd to 21st, while on the Women's Overall Rankings, Kelly Sildaru has moved into 3rd, which bumps Cassie Sharpe down to 4th.
That's all for now from the AFP World Tour, but stay tuned for another rankings update in two weeks following the recently Gold-ranked FIS World Championships in Kreischberg, Austria and the grand daddy event of them all, the Platinum-ranked X Games in Aspen, Colorado. On behalf of everyone at the Association of Freeskiing Professionals, we hope you're having a Happy New Year.