2013 Winter Games to attract top athletes

Last updated 15:30 20/07/2012
Jossi Wells

AIR UP THERE: Wanaka's Jossi Wells competes in the men's freeski slopestyle final during the 2011 Winter Games near Queenstown.

Winter Games NZ
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Nick Pascoe of New Zealand competes in the Men's Giant Slalom run.

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New Zealand will play host to one of the largest snow sport events outside the Winter Olympics next year.

Winter Games New Zealand 2013 will host at least five world cup events, the first time so many have been staged in a single event outside the Olympics.

The Games will also act as a qualifier for the Olympics six months later and offer world ranking points, meaning it is set to attract the top snow sport athletes in the world.

Economic development minister Steven Joyce today confirmed New Zealand Major Events will invest $1 million into the event to supplement funding form Sport New Zealand and Tourism New Zealand.

The programme will include FIS World Cup events in snowboard slopestyle, snowboard cross, freestyle ski halfpipe, freestyle ski slopestyle and snowboard halfpipe. Three Super Continental Cups and seven Continental Cups will also feature in the competition.

"The 2013 Winter Games will be a major step up from the previous two Winter Games. It is a bold move to go with five FIS World Cups and we are now waiting whether our two alpine ski racing events for the adaptive (disabled) skiers will also be World Cups. This would be wonderful for our Vancouver gold medallist, Adam Hall," Games chief executive Arthur Klap said.

The 2013 edition will run over 14 days from August 12-25.

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- Fairfax Media

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