Every year about this time I start thinking about who I think the “BallOfSpray Skiers of the Year” are. This involves me calling @MattP
to ask where the scores are and what really happened. Without fail at this point I complain about the standings lists. The basic IWSF ranking list (whatever that list is really called) favors the highest scores at any record event. The Elite List is weighted by the amount of money on the line at specific events.
Both lists have their detractors.
Some would say the standard list favors the skiers who look to ski as many record events as possible and are shopping for perfect conditions and the best drivers. (Most Ballers would say this sounds like a lot of fun.) If a high level skier hits 20 or 50 rounds and gets 3 magic scores, that is his or her score for the list. It is a ranking of lower pressure and more casual scores done under record rules. This is basically the same as the AWSA ranking list.
The Elite List assigns a value to cash prize events largely based on the amount of the cash prize. The purpose of this list is to show who can win in adverse conditions and when the pressure is on. In theory this is a more important list. It is more of a “Pro Ranking”. The problem is that the amount of cash to be won is not always an indicator how adverse the conditions are. With a limited number of Elite events and with varying point values the end results may or may be influenced by more than a dash of chance. Some years this list make perfect sense and some years it is just wacky.
If you were to rank the worlds best and have to defend your methods how would you do it?