FMBA Gold Cup Kicks Off Introducing a New Pathway to the Top Level of Slopestyle 

May 9, 2024

With the inaugural Gold Cup, the Freeride Mountain Bike Association (FMBA) initiated a new pathway for emerging talent to escalate to the highest level of the sport of Slopestyle Mountain Biking. The 2024 FMB World Tour houses three Gold Events that comprise the highly anticipated cup, cultivating the next generation of Diamond Level athletes. 

Introduced earlier this year through the update of the FMBA Rule Book, the Gold Cup serves as a crucial stepping stone for Slopestyle athletes to enter the pinnacle of the sport. A rider’s top three Gold Event results will count towards the Gold Cup score, setting the stage for a highly competitive season. With currently only three events at this level slated for this year, participation in each is vital for contenders aiming to secure their spot at the 2025 Crankworx FMBA Slopestyle World Championship (SWC). 

The stakes are high as the Gold Cup winner will be prequalified for all of next year’s Crankworx FMBA SWC events. Athletes finishing the season on ranks two to four will each receive a “Golden Ticket” to participate in one of the esteemed Diamond Level events in the upcoming season. If any of the top four riders are already qualified for next year’s SWC, eligibility goes to the next ranked rider on the final Gold Cup standings.

Gold Level Events Coming Up in Germany and Canada 

The first event under the Gold Cup banner will be the iXS Dirt Masters Slopestyle in Winterberg, Germany on May 18th. The competition boasts an impressive lineup, featuring local heroes like Erik Fedko and Tobey Miley, last year’s winner Anton Linder, and international stars such as Tom Isted, Ben Thompson, Griffin Paulson and Christian Arehardt. The full rider list can be found on LiveHeats. Additionally, the legendary “Blue Line” has been notably enhanced with two new features, promising to test and highlight the riders’ technical prowess.

iXS Dirt Masters Slopestyle 2023
Kicking off the first-ever Gold Cup will be the iXS Dirt Masters Slopestyle, already boasting with an incredible athlete lineup. (c) Florian Meinhardt

Later this summer, the series crosses the Atlantic for two events in Western Canada. On August 4th, the crowd favourite Rheeder Slopestyle at SilverStar returns for the second year to the BC resort. Welcoming both male and female competitors, the event taking place within the frame of Crankworx Summer Series SilverStar will once again draw many international elite riders to the event, providing an opportunity for locals to witness world class freeride mountain biking.

Rheeder Slopestyle SilverStar 2023 Tom Isted (c) Clint Trahan
Returning for the second year, the Rheeder Slopestyle will bring the world’s elite to SilverStar Mountain Resort. (c) Clint Trahan

Just one weekend later, the final Gold Cup event of the season, the Big White Invitational hosted by Tom Van Steenbergen, takes place on August 10th. Being a long-standing staple on the FMB World Tour, this event never disappoints when it comes to an athlete lineup that impresses the judges and spectators alike. As a part of the Big White Freeride Days, there’s also the opportunity to participate in Bronze Level Slopestyle events.

Big White Freeride Days (c) Big White Ski Resort
Culminating in the Big White Invitational hosted by Tom Van Steenbergen, the Gold Cup concludes in August. (c) Big White Ski Resort

A Commitment to the Future of Slopestyle

The new Gold Cup does not only offer up-and-coming athletes the chance to step up to the highest level of the sport but offers a total of EUR 35,750 in event prize money for top ranked athletes, adding to its appeal for Slopestyle athletes. Only athletes with an FMBA World Tour license are eligible to attend. As the series expands alongside the FMB World Tour, it aims to include women in the Gold Cup as soon as three or more Women’s Gold Level events are staged within a season. 

This year’s launch of the Gold Cup signifies yet another pivotal development in Slopestyle Mountain Biking, showing the FMBA’s commitment to the longevity and sustainability of the sport by offering a robust platform for emerging talents to ascend to highest levels of the sport.