The Snow Sports NZ Annual Awards presented by Racers Edge Wānaka were held tonight at Coronet Peak in Queenstown. Snowboarding phenomenon Zoi Sadowski-Synnott (Wānaka) was crowned the Snow Sports NZ overall athlete of the year.
Snow Sports NZ is stoked to announce the following winners:
- Instructor of the Year sponsored by NZSIA – Rebecca Matthew
- Coach of the Year sponsored by Blackwells Mazda – Hamish McDougall for Freeski (Wānaka)
- Breakthrough Season sponsored by Winter Games NZ – Ruby Star Andrews (Queenstown)
- Freeride Athlete of the Year sponsored by The Remarkables – Finn Bilous (Wānaka)
- Alpine Ski Racer of the Year sponsored by Coronet Peak – Alice Robinson (Queenstown)
- Snowboarder of the Year sponsored by Dick Schulze – Zoi Sadowski-Synnott (Wānaka)
- Freeskier of the Year sponsored by Mons Royale – Luca Harrington (Wānaka)
- Adaptive Athlete of the Year sponsored by Cardrona / Treble Cone – Adam Hall (Dunedin)
- Snow Sports NZ Overall Athlete of the Year – Zoi Sadowski-Synnott (Wānaka)
Over the past 12 months Sadowski-Synnott continued her utter dominance of women’s snowboarding, once again finishing on the podium at every event she dropped into. A particularly notable achievement is her LAAX Open slopestyle win, a career first for Sadowski- and a dream of hers since she started competing.
Freeski Athlete of the Year winner Luca Harrington had a strong season, claiming his best ever World Cup and World Championships result, with a 4th place at the Silvaplana Slopestyle World Cup and a 5th place at the 2023 World Championships Big Air.
Breakthrough Athlete of the Year was tightly contented, with five athletes having an incredible breakthrough season. Ruby Star Andrews was crowned the winner, with her 3rd place finish at the Mammoth Slopestyle World Cup (during her first ever World Cup season) sealing the deal for her.
PyeongChang 2018 and Beijing 2022 Freeski Olympian Finn Bilous made the transition into Freeride this year, with the Freeride World Tour offering him a place on their prestigious tour. Bilous proved that he belonged on the Tour, achieving both a fourth and fifth place finish at the Kicking Horse and Ordino Arcalís stops respectively.
Alpine Ski Racer of the Year Alice Robinson proved she is back on top form, with a string of top 10 finishes at World Cup and World Championships events. Adaptive Athlete of the Year Adam Hall carried his momentum from 2021/22 into this awards period, claiming World Cup and European Cup podiums throughout the season.
This year’s Coach of the Year award was awarded to Snow Sports NZ’s Freeski Coach Hamish McDougall. McDougall is the lead coach for award winners Ruby Star Andrews and Luca Harrington, along with Ben Barclay. Not only did his athletes achieve phenomenal results, he is also a positive coaching role model, operates with a high level of professionalism and is dedicated to his athletes and the team.
The Snow Sports NZ Annual Awards presented by Racers Edge Wānaka is fantastic event to celebrate the year that has been and a great way to send off Kiwi athletes as they head away to the Northern Hemisphere.