Blog: March 2010

euro trippin' video

a short HD video of my recent euro trippin.
2.5 weeks, 4 countries, 3 contests, a bruised tailbone, messed up ribs, and 1 world title. great trip, minus the tailbone and ribs.

seems every song i picked can't be used on youtube, so the video is to the sweet sounds of shredding.

the globe!

My last minute plan changing has paid off and I've won the world cup halfpipe overall title.

The pipe was pretty difficult for the contest day. Was just super warm and sunny here all week so lots of holes and lots of bumps. But as always, good riding still went down. Freddie austbo won the guys, followed by christophe schmidt then myself. On the girls side holly crawford won followed by mercedes nicoll, who's been having a good run here in europe with a 4th and 2 podiums in 3 contests.

It feels awesome to have won the globe. I never really thought about trying for it, especially this year where my focus was solely on the olympics. But circumstances brought me to europe and it went from there. I'm still pretty beat up from last weekend (it still hurts to sit), so really happy i was able to get some good runs in and finish the year with a podium and the crystal globe.

since this list is very long, i'm going the short way..
a huge thanks to Kimmie, my family and all my friends for the support, todd at perform x training, Canada snowboard and own the podium, and i have to say a big thanks to my sponsors for all the help. Bataleon snowboards, bern helmets, whistler/blackcomb, dakine, cheetah factory racing, reef, surefoot whistler, and rude boys snowboard shop in banff who've been supporting me for pretty much ever.
this year's been awesome.

euro trippin'

in what seems like a trend of last minute plan changes, somehow now i'm in spain!

X games in france didn't go as good as i'd hoped. Just wasn't riding super good and didn't make the cut to finals. Fun trip of shredding though. pipe was pretty good, and got to ride some nice lines which i always like.
Quickly skipping out of tignes, i headed to italy for a world cup in a town called valmalenco. Knowing it was an 18 foot pipe, i wasn't expecting much. I hate 18foot pipes and generally avoid them. I hadn't ridden one in nearly a year, and less than a week in the last 2 seasons combined. For me, it's extremely different. a 22 foot pipe is nearly 25% bigger than an 18 footer. it's a big difference, it'd be like telling a 100m sprinter to just run 80 meters but their specialty is the last 20 meters of the 100m race.
Some people can bounce back and forth between the 2 pretty easily, but i seem to struggle in an 18 footer in comparison to the 22s. maybe it's because i'm taller and ride bigger boards than most people. I don't know what it is, but that was my last serious contest in an 18 foot pipe that's for sure. On the contest day, i broke a binding in practise, messed up a board during the day and fell really hard in practise for finals. I hit some undervert and put my butt into the coping. I was not stoked. But i ended up 4th at the end of the day and in the lead for the overall world cup pipe title. It's weird how things balance out sometimes.

My plans had me going to boston the next day to visit my brother and the Bern helmet offices, then heading off to the US open in vermont. BUT...
The overall title has never a goal of mine, but being in the lead and having one world cup left was too interesting of a possibility to pass up. It was a really tough decision since the us open is my favorite contest. I'm from the east coast (quebec) and it just feels like home when i'm riding around there. crazy weather, crazy riding, good pipe and slopestyle setup. i love it.
But spain won out due to the crystal globe (prize for the overall)
After riding all day on sunday, traveling to milan, i stayed up nearly all night trying to change plane tickets so i could come to spain. By 430 am i had it all done, passed out and off to spain.
I just got into la molina, checked out the pipe (22 footer that's looking good; hopefuly it'll be riding good) and am settling in for the week.
Should have some time this week to get some video up from the euro trippin. check back.

euro x games

somehow i've ended up in france.

weeeeeeeee. a few chairs, some hiking and voila! we lapped this guy a few times.

to make my long desicion making seem short.. i was supposed to be on a cat trip riding pow this week, but some weird weather (ie no pow) and bad forecast prompted me to opt out and take an invite to go to the x games in tignes, france.
I haven't been here in a long time, and that was early season. This place is HUGE. lifts going everywhere and lots of chutes and cool lines to be had.
So after a day of shredding pipe, my friend trennan (ski coach for all the canadian pipe skiers) and i cruised off to check out the mtn and get some lines in. variable snow but super fun day. nice to be back in big mountains again.
Girls pipe quals is going down in a few minutes so i gotta jet and check it out.

the drop in to the above chute

one of our lines. down the cresent chute. sloestyle start in the foreground

tren and me stoked.

it was a little cold and a wee bit breezy today.

hoceky hockey hockey! eh! eh! eh!

Having played hockey since i can walk, it's one of the sports i associate the most with the olympics. So i try to get into as many games as possible. Our athlete pass doesn't get us into the indoor venues unfortunately, we still need a ticket. Each country's olympic committee is given x number of tickets for each sport. These are then dished out, in our case, by the athelete services people who are olympic legends marnie mcbean, sylvie frechete and jonathen guilmette. all multiple olympic medalists. They take care of the athletess in our village, make sure we're happy, give advice and also give out tickets. So you ask for tickets in advance and one of these 3 will let you know if you have them or not. Usually hockey games are in big demand, so the usual answer is no. BUT, if you hang out long enough in the athlete lounge chances are someone won't come pick up a ticket and you happen to be right close by, you can grab the ticket.

So between a family ticket, asking for a ticket and hanging around the lounge picking up scraps i got to see all the canada games from the 1/8 finals all the way to the finals and got into the bronze medal game too. The athlete seats are WAY up there, but you're in the rink so who cares. Sometimes, like the bronze medal game, a box ticket rolls through from people who want athletes around. In the case of the gold medal game, i got my ticket (nosebleed) 20 minutes before the puck dropped and it was a coin toss to see who got the ticket! (2 minutes later the other person got one too). I've seen a fair few hockey games in my life, and to say that the canada-russia and canada-usa games were crazy would be an understatement. It was insane, and my voice is still hoarse 5 days later! Soo stoked i got to see those games.
We all know how those games ended and it was amazing to be in the rink.

The hockey players did hang out in the olympic village. You could plop down next to them for breakfast or play some ping pong with them (sid's backhand is not limited to hockey!). I went on a bit of a mission these olympics to meet as many canadian athletes as i could. Makes cheering that much more fun and i like meeting new people. I met sidney crosby, shea weber and marc andre fleury pretty early on as they were in the lounge the most. I was pretty stoked that sid and shea watched the pipe event in the lounge and the following day told me I "was freakin nuts". I provided Fleury and some of the other hockey guys with a laugh as i asked for martin brodeur's name. Obviously i know who he is, but not having cable at my house, i'll say it's tough for me to recognize him without his jersey on! (and a lot of the other guys for that matter). Another day, brad martin and i were the only people in the lounge and playing nhl10 on an Xbox. Fleury came in and watched us play. As we were playing canada vs. canada, i jokingly said we should put marc in net. Well, brad did for the shootout, and i ended up finally scoring in a 12 shot marathon. he turned around to marc " how could you let that in!!?" 'sorry' was marc's sheepish answer through all the laughing. i can't say i've ever played an nhl video game and had the player right there in the room.

Canadians like to put hockey players up high on a pedastal but they're normal people, just really good at hockey. So it was really cool to hang out with them and get to know them (and everyone else in the village!).and yes i realise i just posted stories about nhl players, but that's what people have asked me the most. "do the players actually stay in the village?" "have you seen sid?" yes to both, and they even celebrated their gold medals and the end of the games in the village with everyone else.

sidney and shea. sidney's the short guy in case your wondering

rob fan, mercedes nicoll, sarah conrad, brad martin, and palmer taylor at the russia canada game. Rob's first nhl/world level hockey game!

i'd hate to play canada in this rink! nothing but red shirts and screaming fans

mercedes and i at the gold medal game

it always amazes me that there's still fans for countries half way around the world. Suomi (finland) fans for the bronze medal game against slovakia. and still alot of canada jersey's!

brad martin would be the least official looking person in this box. finland-slovakia bronze medal game

our 2 assistant chef de mission. legend's steve podborski and joe juneau. (skiing and hockey)

scott neidermeyer and i waiting for the closing ceremonies. yup again, he's the shorter guy. if i had another 30-40 pounds on me maybe i would have stayed in hockey!

my 2nd olympic run! i love the internet!

my second run from the olympic finals. randomly found it on the internet.
stoked. first time i get to see it.

village life, media and shaking babies and kissing hands

part 2 of olympic living. Now that i'm out of the village maybe i can catch up on things!

When you do well you're time gets eaten up with media and appearances after your event. If you have a medal it's a full time 16 hour day job for days on end. With my 7th it was mid-road busy. Over the week and a bit left during the games i rolled through CTV, RDS, CBC and Global, plus numerous radio spots. We also get called out for quite a few shaking babies and kissing hands events. A few of the better, and/or easier, events were the Canada Snowboard meet'n greet party, a "play it cool" reception at the David Suzuki foundation and one with the mayor. From what we knew about this one it was maelle ricker getting thrown out on stage in front of 10,000 people at Livecity. Turns out the mayor named the day "canada snowboard day in the city of vancouver", maelee said a few words then we all got thrown out in front of 10,000 people! This one was quikly followed by a Damien marley concert that was awesome.

On a few days, you're ushered from one event to the other, not even really knowing where you're going! but it's all good. We're all grateful for the support from fans and sponsors so we roll along, smile, shake babies, kiss hands and enjoy it. It's rare that snowboarders get so much attention.

The olympic village was pretty much like living in a bubble. No stress, relaxing, mellow. it was awesome. The food was good and there was a huge selection. and there wasn't lines at mcdonalds. But a few eating contest got a little out of control. Greg bretz managed to pound back 60 mcnuggets! unreal.

Being our home games, and one of the largest teams we definitely got the choice buildings. right on the water at False creek. The condos were pretty unreal. And our athlete lounge was insane! top floor of one of our buildings. full views all around, ping pong, foozball, tvs, xbobx, wiis, food. everyone spent some serious time up there. Whenever there was an event with Canadians competing, the lounge was packed with everyone screaming and cheering. Getting insight from teamates who weren't competing. pretty cool watching a hockey game with marty brodeur and marc andre fleury and getting their insight into the game. It was awesome.
well, that's enough for now.
i need to go riding.

the team canada moose

village art

hmm which houses are for the canadians?

view from my deck. it's ok i guess

athlete hangout barn. video games, tunes, pool, foozball, etc...

Dom maltais pong-ing in the penthouse athlete's lounge

who lives here?

good luck sneaking into the village


canada house warmup with a view

no pressure!my nephew cedric, terri, and my bro claude with maelle

the vancouver mayor and palmer taylor, sarah conrad, and maelle

small crowd,10,000 people at livecity in yaletown

hate 'em or love 'em! judges and good guys at the canada snowboard party. Brandon wong, myself, dave desa, and marcello centurione

RDS prior to being interviewed by my mom's cousin, and RDS host claude maillot

brad martin and myself on the CTV set

Dr. Suzuki and myself

Dr. Suzuki and a bunch of olympians who are members of "play it cool"

Subscribe to Blog: March 2010