Faction skis, the best for freeskiing? That’s what the Faction Collective is gunning for. The story starts in 2006, in Verbier, with a group of avid skiers who love freedom and have a different vision to the one offered by big names of the ski industry. After starting with a few powder and park sticks, the brand now caters to all the needs of freeskiers, notably with models such as the Mana and Dancer, as well as other staples like the Prodigy for freestyle and Agent for touring. A brand created by freeskiers for freeskiers.
The Faction Collective: ‘nothing but fat twins, handmade in the Austrian Alps.’
Faction Skis was born in 2006 in the Swiss Alps and more precisely in Verbier, a freeride hot spot where the final stage of the Freeride World Tour takes place every year, on the north face of the Bec des Rosses for the famous Xtreme de Verbier. And what better place to launch a freeski brand whose objective is to create high-quality skis for freeride, freestyle and All-Mountain?
The story starts in the early 2000s. Snowboard is taking over the winter sports world with its wild and rebel culture inspired by skate and surf. Resolutely cool, snowboard companies are young and share a deep bond with their customers. On the opposite, the ski industry is ageing, often elitist, and dominated by big brands who lost contact with the mountain. That was the feeling of a small group of passionate and resourceful skiers who started to experiment with new ideas in one of the best freeride spots in the world, the Verbier. In 2006, this small group of outcast riders went against the current and followed their own path.
Prodigy, Mana, Dancer: a growing range
The Faction Collective sets the tone from the get-go in a first catalogue for the winter 2008-2009. The collective expresses its desire to ‘create the highest performing freestyle and freeride skis out there – designed, tested, and manufactured by skiers, for skiers’ and to ‘build a company that follows its own ideals and work ethic’. At the time, 5 models were available: the Wednesday, the Heroine, The 3.Zero, Royale and the Thirteen. Nothing but fat twins, for the park and pow!
Season after season, the collection grows and the Faction Monoski collection "Vive le mono !", was unveiled for winter 2011 – 2012, soon followed the Faction Prodigy 2.0 for the park and the Faction Dictator 2.0 and Dictator 2.0X in Faction’s touring skis range. The Collective now offers an exhaustive collection that will make all freeskiers happy.
Faction and Candide Thovex: a 10-year collaboration
If there’s a date that marked the Faction Collective, it must be the 26th of January 2012 when Candide Thovex joined the team. Candide "AIR" Thovex, alias Candide Thove'xtraterreste or the Flying Frenchman was already a freeskiing superstar and probably the best freeskier in history. In 1999, when he was only 16 years old, Candide finished 4th in the X Games’ Big Air for his first participation. A few days later, its popularity went off the scale when he launched a D-Spin 720 over the terrifying ‘Chad's Gap’, a 36-meter long and 12-meter deep ravine. What followed is just as crazy, in addition to his many out-of-competition achievements, Candide is the only rider to have won in all the X Games disciplines (Big Air, Halfpipe, and Slopestyle) and the Freeride World Tour (first participation of course!).
So when Candide joined Faction, it was not to show off! The skier’s pro-models – the CT-Series – came soon after and became a benchmark over the winters. The Faction Candide 2.0 and the Faction Candide 3.0 skis came in 102 and 108mm versions and were loved for their incredible versatility. As for Candide himself, his technical finesse is only equalled by the width of his skis. He later abandoned the ‘narrow’ Faction Candide 2.0 to adopt the 122mm 5.0 version, more suited to his style and lines.
Candide Thovex stayed 10 years with Faction, a decade marked by numerous high-performance skis, the result of the collaboration between the brand and the pro skier.
Faction: the definition of modern freeskiing
Nowadays, the Faction Collective is one of the most important Freeski companies in the world and several world-class athletes are part of the team. From Kelly Sildaru and her young brother Henry, to even Devin Logan or Elisabeth Gerritzen, the Collective can count on several high-profile daredevils to develop its sticks! Winter after winter, skiers, artists, directors, engineers and other partners have expanded the family and helped to perfect them. The motivation and authenticity of The Faction Collective remain the same.
Where to buy Faction skis? At Glisshop of course!
Glisshop stocks lots of models from Faction. Skis for every type of skiers, freestylers, freeriders, ski touring enthusiasts. If you miss the 80s, you’ll be happy to know Faction offers a monoski dubbed Le Mono. At Glisshop, enjoy a great choice and advice, so if you can’t decide between several skis, contact our experts, they’re here to help you.