Snowboarding's World Rookie Tour to conclude in jetset Austrian resort

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The Independent Online

The World Rookie Tour, an international contest for snowboarders aged 15 and under, recommences in 2010 on January 16 with the Protest World Rookie Fest in Livigno, Italy, before taking in three more stops before the finals in Austria this April.

Serious members of the partygoing community might like to stick around for a few weeks after the finals as the Austrian resort of Ischgl is well known for its "Top of the Mountain" concerts, the next one being on June 1.

The best riders from each tour stop will be put forward for a place in Ischgl, joining the World Rookie Rankings' top 20 as well as selected boarders from various National Snowboard Associations.

The overall winner then gets fast-tracked into the world of professional snowboarding: as well as all the various photoshoots and promo activities that come with being the year's best young snowboarder, they also get a trip to ride the snowy Chilean mountains and catch it all on video, as well as an exclusive interview to a secret event yet to be unveiled by the World Snowboarding Federation.

Chile is not just a handy prize location for the WSF and the Rookie tour. The Valle Nevado resort in the Andes east of Santiago also hosts the Freeride Rookie Fest in August during the region's peak snowsport season.

Protest World Rookie Fest
January 16-20
Livigno, Italy

Protest Pyrenees Rookie Fest
January 29-31
Vallnord, Andorra

Protest Balkan Rookie Fest
February 12-14
Iver Mokra Gora, Serbia

Protest East Rookie Fest
March 5-7
Špindler?v Mlýn, Czech Republic

Protest World Rookie Finals
April 7-11
Ischgl, Austria

World Rookie Tour Website: