Between rookie Logan Pehota's rapid ascension, the canceled men's Xtreme Verbier comp, and world champion Eva Walkner's repeat title, the 2016 Freeride World Tour was one for the books. In early April, after five competitions, Walkner and Loïc Collomb-Patton stood on top of the overall podium, while Pehota and Jackie Paaso collected second, and Fabio Studer and freshman Arianna Tricomi took home third.
For four months this winter, we watched their trials and triumphs on the mountain, but there's so much more to the tour than the comp live stream shows. Enter the Freeride World Tour Diaries, a five-chapter web series filmed and produced by the tour, which sought to get inside the minds of six athletes from pre-season training up to the podium in Switzerland. Join Julien Lopez, Jérémie Heitz, Nadine Wallner, George Rodney, Bene Mayr, and Estelle Balet, whose recent death the snowsports community is mourning, in reflection on expectations, pressure, disappointment, and the myriad other mental hoops athletes jump through.
In the three episodes of the final chapter, The End Game, Balet and Lopez, Heitz and Wallner, and Mayr and Rodney take the mic. During the concluding installment, just released, Mayer discusses a season of ups and downs, and Rodney, who had hoped to repeat his 2015 title but packed it in after the second event due to injury, talks about silver linings and what’s on deck for next season.
"The future for me is up in the air, as the future always is," Rodney told POWDER. "I'm going to just focus on what's right in front of me and take it from there. All I really know is that I never lose. I either win or I learn."
With three episodes per chapter, there are 12 more videos available for your viewing pleasure.