Truckee snowboarders sweep podium at Freeride World Tour |

Truckee snowboarders sweep podium at Freeride World Tour

Sammy Luebke of Truckee competes in Swatch Freeride World Tour in Fieberbrunn, Austria, on Wednesday. Luebke won the competition.
Courtesy Dom Daher / FWS |

The Truckee-Tahoe area is home to some of the best big-mountain snowboarders on the planet. Wednesday’s Swatch Freeride World Tour stop in Fieberbrunn, Austria, proved as much.

Competing in powder conditions under a blue sky, Truckee riders swept the podium in the third event of the series, with Sammy Luebke winning, Jonathan Penfield placing second and Chris Galvin third.

With their top finishes, the trio secured spots in the fourth Freeride World Tour event, to be held in Haines, Alaska, on March 17, as well as the final event in Verbier on April 2. Another top contender from the Truckee-Tahoe area, Ralph Backstrom, did not stay on his feet Wednesday but still qualified for Haines.

Luebke, who also won the Chamonix stop of the tour, entered as the favorite and used his trademark smooth riding and grab mastery to earn the victory with a high score of 89.66. Penfield and Galvin received scores of 82.33 and 78.33, respectively.

In the women’s ski competition, meanwhile, Jaclyn Paaso of Squaw Valley put down an impressive, full-throttle line with a huge air near the bottom of the venue to advance to Haines.

Video replays of Wednesday’s riding is available in its entirety on, where viewers can select any of the riders and share their runs with the rider tagging system. Videos from previous events are also available to watch.

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