PRESS RELEASE: Crankworx
It's the end of an era... for now.
In three weeks time on Saturday, March 7, all the action, excitement, inspiration and drama of the highest level of Slopestyle mountain biking will take flight for another season. 14 of the world’s top competitors have been given the golden ticket and are getting ready to descend on Rotorua for the first contest of the Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Championship season.
As the pilgrimage to the Southern Hemisphere begins, the full rider list for the Maxxis Slopestyle in Memory of McGazza has been released.
First up, the top five from the 2019 SWC standings:Emil Johansson SWE
Dawid Godziek POL
Tomas Lemoine FRA
Torquato Testa ITA
Erik Fedko GER
These riders have earned entry into all Crankworx Slopestyle competitions in 2020.
But noticeably absent from the roster: the reigning Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Champion. In recent years, Brett Rheeder has been the most decorated Slopestyle athlete currently competing on the circuit, second only to Brandon Semenuk in the history of the discipline.
Rheeder's winning run in Rotorua last year, and season end celebrating his overall championship win, and Emil's first at Joyride. Photos: Fraser Britton and Jay French
Rheeder, who turns 27 in under a week, has won seven Crankworx Slopestyle comps over the course of his career. He says he still plans to return to compete at Red Bull Joyride at Crankworx Whistler 2020, as well as Red Bull Rampage.
With the Canadian removed from the roster, Johansson becomes the top ranked competitor heading into Rotorua. The 23-year-old Swede returned to competition mid-season after a year off working through some medical issues. He came out swinging, placing second in Innsbruck and ending his Crankworx season on the highest note possible, winning Red Bull Joyride.
Victory. Photos: Fraser Britton and Jay French
It’s a feeling shared by others who’re chomping at the bit to put their off-season training to work.
Following is the next top-seven riders from the FMB World Ranking. The ripple effect of Rheeder’s departure bumps Messere up from first alternate onto the start list.Alex Alanko SWE
Nicholi Rogatkin USA
Thomas Genon BEL
Paul Couderc FRA
Lucas Huppert SUI
Lukas Knopf GER
Anthony Messere CAN
The world will certainly be watching to see if Rogatkin can find his stride once again in 2020. After winning three out of four events in 2018, the American cracked the top five only once in 2019. Genon will also be looking to better his performance from last season - a fall off the first drop in New Zealand resulted in a shoulder injury that took him out for the entire season.
Rounding things out, two wildcards will join the pack.Timothé Bringer FRA
Owen Marks USA
Bringer gains entry as the 2019 Red Bull Rookie of the Year, while Marks earns his spot thanks to his strong performance in the 2019 Big White Tom van Steenbergen Invitational.
A new year and a new decade of competition are upon us. Who’s going to step up to the challenge and make their mark?
Tune in Saturday, March 7 to watch it all go down.
Keep up with all the action from the Crankworx World Tour at RedBull.com/Crankworx, including LIVE coverage on Red Bull TV of:
CLIF Speed & Style presented by Mons Royale
Maxxis Slopestyle in Memory of McGazza
100% Dual Slalom Rotorua
RockShox Rotorua Pump Track presented by Torpedo7
Crankworx Rotorua Downhill presented by Gull
Head to RedBull.com/Crankworx for broadcast details and times.
You can also catch the action live on Crankworx.com, along with schedule and broadcast info, tickets, event details, and results from across the Crankworx World Tour.