Winter Games NZ: Obsidian
Winter Games New Zealand is the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest snow sports event. Traditionally it welcomes the world’s best skiers and snowboarders to compete in the opening of the FIS Park and Pipe World Cup season and The North Face Frontier, a Freeride World Qualifying Tour 4* & 2* event. This year that can’t happen, so rather than let the event lapse Winter Games NZ will run Obsidian.
Obsidian is a content driven event that will pit three teams of New Zealand’s best freeski and snowboard athletes against each other in four events. It will take place over a ten-day weather window between the 10thand 20thof August 2020.
Each 7 person team will comprise a mix of male and female, ski and snowboard, freeride and park athletes and will be led by a Team Captain; an experienced and strong personality. All athletes will be elite level; FWT winners, Olympic medallists and film orientated athletes at the top of their game.
The four events are:
Freeride– Classic freeride contest format based on the FWT 4* events held during WGNZ. Terrain will be heli accessed and the terrain will be epic.
Park Jam – A jam session using the rail and jib features of Cardrona Park with judges eliminating the lowest placed athletes until a winner is found.
Big Air – The same jam format as the Park Jam on one of the Cardrona Park Jumps.
Mountain Shred– Each team will shred up a local resort, enhancing natural terrain to session and exploring breathtaking sidecountry. They will then create an edit of this day which will be judged.
Each team will be assigned their own film crews to capture the action and lifestyle as it unfolds both on and off the mountain.
This year’s aim is to promote our kiwi athletes and spectacular venues whilst building an exciting athlete focused event, full of style and creativity. This is not a one off event, the plan is to use this year’s event as a template to build on for 2021 and beyond, when international athletes will compete
Marty has an extensive and in-depth knowledge of elite winter sports. This is his third year as the CEO of Winter Games NZ, prior to this role Marty was the CEO of Snow Sports NZ for six years. He is also the Chair of the Ski Areas Association of NZ (SAANZ), represents NZ on a number of FIS Committees and was recently appointed Chef de Mission of the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Games. His passion for winter sports and belief in his team drives him to tirelessly work to ensure Winter Games NZ is continuously evolving to be the best it can be.
Operations and Delivery Manager
Over 15 years ago now Gemma was thrown in the deep end in with sports event management and absolutely loved it. She enjoys working behind the scenes of major sporting events and the challenges it brings. She has worn a few different hats within the Games team and is now managing the venues and awards team.
Communications and Marketing Manager
Sophie has a passion for sports, media and the mountains. As a past professional sportswoman herself, she focuses on telling the athletes stories and has over 15 years experience in international sports events. This will be her third year with the Games and she is proud to be part of this elite and uniquely kiwi Winter Sports event. She manages Media, Marketing, Broadcast and the Communications teams.
Tim has been an integral part of the Winter Games NZ team for four years now, starting out as an intern and now in 2020 he is in his second year as the Sports Manager. Prior to Winter Games Tim was a part of the Sport NZ Graduate programme. He loves working with the Games team as they're such an awesome crew and he feels really proud when he sees Kiwis standing on top of the podium. In his spare time you will find Tim cruising Lake Wanaka in his sailing boat.
Volunteers really are the heart, soul and engine of an event. Jo’s role as the Volunteer Manager allows her to connect with this core crew and to create a culture that they want to be part of. As an avid snow dweller and ski slider with extensive event experience and community connectedness, this is her ideal job.
Georgina has an extensive and varied marketing background and a passion for creating experiences that are memorable and consistent across every aspect of an organisation’s activities. Georgina has recently joined the Winter Games NZ team, however her involvement in the snow sports industry spans over 18 years. Her industry experience includes; ski instructing, frontline guest experience, marketing, and events.
Communications & Marketing Coordinator
Britt was an intern at Winter Games 2018 and is has now been a part of the Winter Games communications and media team for the last two years. Coming from a professional athlete background, Britt has competed at Winter Games for many years and is loving being on the other side of the event now. Working with a sport she is passionate about and getting to spend her time up the mountain is why Britt loves her job.
Cardrona Media Coordinator
Alex is Snow Sports NZ’s Communications Manager and enjoys being part of the Winter Games NZ team as the Venue Media Manager at Cardrona Alpine Resort. She loves that she gets to call the mountains her office and has the awesome job of writing daily media releases for the Park and Pipe and Para alpine events.