In partnership with the Atlanta Braves, U.S. Ski & Snowboard will host the Visa Big Air Presented by Land Rover at SunTrust Park Dec. 20-21. The event will be sanctioned as a FIS Snowboard and Freeski World Cup and will offer elite international men’s and women’s big air competition.
The Visa Big Air Presented by Land Rover is part of a multi-year commitment by U.S. Ski & Snowboard to bring big air events to the masses in breathtaking new environments by hosting one city big air event per season leading into the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.
As part of its renewed sponsorship of U.S. Ski & Snowboard through 2026, Visa is the founding title sponsor of this new big air series; Visa is also the preferred way to pay at both the online U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team Shop and the on-site merchandise experiences. Atlanta is an optimal first site for the Visa Big Air series, as it is an iconic sports city with great Olympic history.
“The Visa Big Air at SunTrust Park will bring our sports out of the mountains and to the people in a major metropolitan area,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw. “We are very excited to have Visa as our title sponsor and to partner with the Atlanta Braves to continue to grow the fan-base of this exciting sport for our athletes, sponsors and the snow sports industry ahead of the 2022 Games in Beijing."
Big air competition has been a critical part of snowboarding’s progression since the start of organized competitions. Air + Style, one of the first major big air events, started in 1994 and Big Air has also been part of the Winter X Games program since the event was founded in 1997. Snowboard big air made its Olympic debut at the Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018 where U.S. Snowboard Team’s own Kyle Mack (West Bloomfield, Mich.) and Jamie Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, Calif.) walked away with silver medals at the inaugural event. On the heels of snowboard big air’s debut in PyeongChang, freeskiers will make their first Olympic big air appearance at the Olympic Games Beijing 2022. This December, snowboard, and freeski big air competition will add yet another major debut to the sport’s list at the Atlanta Braves’ state of the art SunTrust Park.
“We are proud to showcase SunTrust Park to a global audience as the host of this world cup ski and snowboard event,” said Derek Schiller, Atlanta Braves President and CEO. “In collaboration with U.S. Ski and Snowboard, SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta will provide an incredible venue for fans from around the region to witness this truly unique event. It’s our privilege to host these world-class athletes.”
The competition will take place on a 15-story tall steel scaffold jump structure consisting of up to 29,000 unique pieces, which is then covered with up to 800 tons of snow to create a surface on which the world’s best freeskiers and snowboarders can perform. Athletes will drop into an approximately 40-degree in-run, then launch themselves off the jump at speeds up to 40 miles per hour to perform their biggest tricks while traveling up to 70 feet in the air. The competition is judged on progression, amplitude, variety, execution, and difficulty.
The Visa Big Air will be the first event of its kind to come to Atlanta. Event organizers expect to provide a taste of mountains and Olympic winter competition to 20,000 fans for each of the two days of competition. U.S. Freeski Olympians Julia Krass (Hanover, N.H.) and Maggie Voisin (Whitefish, Mont.), as well as two-time Olympic medalist Nick Goepper are set to compete. In addition, Olympic gold medalists Red Gerard (Silverthorne, Colo.), Jamie Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, Calif.) as well as the 2018-19 FIS Snowboard Overall Crystal Globe Winner Chris Corning (Silverthorne, Colo.) will represent the U.S. Snowboard Team.
If you live in Metro Atlanta or consider yourself an action sports fan, the Visa Big Air is a must-see. Learn more about the event and purchase your tickets here. Continue to learn more about the Visa Big Air at USSkiandSnowboard.org.