New York, NY – The World Pro Ski Tour season comes to a close with a message of revitalization and re-emergence. Following a business re-organization, new World Pro Ski Tour Chairman and long-time supporter of ski racing, Dan Leever has appointed Jon J. Franklin, former Winter Sports Vice President at IMG Media as the new tour Chief Executive Officer, charged with leading a new era for the WPST. Recently, Franklin served as CEO of Glory Sports International where under his leadership, Glory was named the world’s number one Kickboxing promotion (2017) by Combat Press and as one of the World’s most influential combat sports and martial arts promotions by Fox Sports.
Franklin’s background ensures he’s a natural fit to lead the World Pro Ski Tour’s revitalization, having formerly been agent to top Olympic and World Champion skiers such as Tommy Moe, AJ Kitt and Bill Johnson and more recently managing sponsor programs for Olympic Gold medal skiers Bode Miller and Julia Mancuso. Additionally, Franklin, who will begin his tenure this month, has sold and managed multiple title sponsorship activations in ski racing including for the World Pro Ski Tour itself and for the global FIS Ski World Cup.
“We are leading the charge to revitalize the World Pro Ski Tour,” said Franklin, “to provide opportunities for ski racers and to re-energize dual format ski racing globally.” In March 2017, after much demand and nearly two decades since the last dual Pro Race was held in the U.S., the World Pro Ski Tour was resurrected by Ed Rogers, owner of the US Pro Ski Tour through the 1990’s. The tour featured a number of iconic racers, including France’s Jean-Claude Killy, America’s Billy Kidd, and the late Vladimir “Spider” Sabich.
The World Pro Ski Tour is a nationwide tour of events different from standard International Ski Federation (FIS) or Olympic ski events in that alternatively two competitors race side-by-side in a single elimination bracket akin to drag racing meets skiing. The popular dual-slalom format, made famous by legendary U.S. Ski team coach Bob Beattie in the late 1960’s, allows on-site spectators and TV viewers to consume the most exciting and easiest to understand format in alpine ski racing. Racers compete for prize money and a World Pro title.
The Tour’s format has drawn in legions of fans and as of lately top ski racing competitors such as three-time Olympian Nolan Kasper and World Champion Silver Medalist Phil Brown who have taken the Tour titles in recent seasons. To be noted, recently the FIS has also adopted dual format racing with a version now scheduled