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"

olympic life part 1

wow, unreal week since the pipe last week. Gonna try and get some posts up about olympic life after your event is done.
The night after pipe, i left and went home to squamish to hang out with my family and have a big breakfast with some friends, then ran back down to the city to catch the girls pipe event. All of them were ripping. Fun to watch it all go down. The crowd was going crazy again. So sick. We all had a great time running into friends in the stands and running into some personalities. My favorite was being able to chat with jake burton for a little while and fill him in on a few stashes for his upcoming day up on blackomb. He was pretty stoked to get some local info on lines.
The following day was all about running around doing media appearances and interviews. Followed by getting to watch the latvia-czech hockey game with my family. Still a crazy crowd! unbelievable the fans that come out to the olympics from fairly random countries (latvia) and in force!
For the weekend i went back home and hit up some blackcomb backountry with my brothers one day and a few friends the next. Both my brothers are really good skiers, so it was fun to be able to scare them a bit and get them in on some good lines. One of them hasn't skied out west much, so his eyes were fairly wide seeing me walk to the edge of big cliffs and call him over. Super fun weekend of shredding in full bluebird. soo nice out.
More to come, I got the canada-slovakia game to get too! OOOWWWW!

'06 cdn guys pipe team watching the girls pipe event. myself, hugo lemay, crispin lipscomb and brad martin

jake burton and myself. 2 olympics for me and 2 photos with jake. haha

It might suck trying to follow your little brother who's an olympian known for hiking... those 2 dots are my brothers sucking wind.

my oldest brother claude dropping in

One of the objectives of sunday, decker mtn

Hiking up to decker mtn, my girlfriend kimmie following the boot pack


WOW! little late in getting to this, but life has been crazy the last few days.
Stoked i got 7th in the Halfpipe last wednesday night. It was an interesting day for me for sure.
My first qualification run i fell on a cab 9. WHAT? This rachets up the pressure on your second run by a lot. I was confident i'd land my second run but, sometimes you don't. So i had to spend some time accepting that possibility and getting around it and telling my self that i was going to land that 2nd run.
In quals, my run was shaping up to be switch back 5 mute, cab 9 melon, switch method, cab 7 mute, and edning with a frontside 9 stalefish. As i went through the 2nd run it was all good, until i hit a rut going into my last trick. I bailed on the front 9 and stopped the trick at 720. I wasn't going to risk not landing at this point. BUT, i knew the run would score lower than i'd like. 8th place, top 9 go through, and with 10 guys left to go that can beat me, i don't like the odds. To say i was nervous watching my friends drop in and do there runs is an understatement. i wanted to puke.
But i made it through in 9th.
Semis, i changed my run to dropping in forward for a method, front 7 tuck knee indy, cab 9 melon, switch backside 720 mute, to backside 900 mute.
My first run went ok, but had a few mistakes. Again it left me on the bubble to qualify for the finals. uhhh. But with reverse order seeding for this round I got to watch everyone try and make they're way into the top 6. Nobody was able to bump me so I dropped into my second run knowing i was in.
Food at this point was starting to be an issue. I'd eaten at 11am in the morning, it was now 6pm and finals starting soon. It was a strange schedule for the games but i knew about it a head of time and trained pretty hard to be able to ride for hours on end. But really, the schedule sucked. By the end of the comp, six of us had ridden 3 practise sessions and 3 contest rounds with really no time for more than a snack.

FINALS! the crowd was unreal. I was the first guy to drop in and i took a minute prior to my runs to absorb the scene from the top of the pipe. Big crowd, empty perfect pipe. Loved it. I'll have that memory for ever.
My first run was supposed to be method, front 7 tuck knee indy, cab 1080 melon, front 9 stale to back nine mute, but i clipped the lip on the 720. As i took off into the 1080, i knew i didnt have enough speed to get it done so i landed it at 900 and quickly decided to go into my semis run. Not the run i was looking for.
My second run also was not what it was supposed to be. same run as above but was going to end in a backside double cork 900. I had a bobble going into the last hit
which threw me off enough that i didn't think i would be able to get the double so i went for just a backside 9 to end it off. Not quite the runs i was looking for but 7th at the olympics isn't too bad. It was also the best finish ever by a canadian in the guy's pipe event. So i got that going for me for at least 4 years. haha

The crowd was amazing. I don't usually acknowledge much prior to my runs but being at home and having that crowd, i had to get them to make some noise. It was so loud from up top. Never heard anything like it for a snowboard comp. absolutely loved it. When one of my runs in semis was over, i realized that hanging out in front of the judging booth, the crowd couldn't see the riders. So i ran back up just to give them a wave and the response was crazy. The crowd blew up! That was going to happen again for sure. Both my finals runs, i made sure to run back up the pipe a little ways and give the crowd a wave. It was truely amazing. My last run i gave the crowd a little bow. It wasn't an exit bow from contest riding, just a big thank you on my part. It was the night of my life and a big part of that was the crowd response and i wanted to pay them back.
Thank you to everyone for the support, loved every minute of it! and i swear i'll get around to my emails one day soon.
check back after the games, i'll have some photos up and such.

game day

i kinda thought i'd be nervous for today.
I'm not.
I fell asleep right away last night, slept great and Brad didn't even snore! which is rare.
this morning i feel awesome. Really excited to ride my snowboard. contrary to '06, it doesn't feel like the olympics. My head is in a totally different place. Experience maybe. or maybe being 7 years older than my competitors! and i think the oldest guy ever to ride in an olympic pipe event, which may or may not be a good thing..
I just can't wait to snowboard. it's my favorite thing to do in life and today i get to share that with the world.
I know i may not win, hell, i might not even make finals. Shit happens and pipe riding is crazy these days. But i'm totally at ease and happy that i've done everthing and taken advantage of every opportunity that i could have to be here and do my best.
it's gonna be a fun day of riding and i can't wait!

oh and i found out i got bib #26..


Pipe comp is tomorrow.
Practise tonight was super fun. Pipe was perfect. Feeling good and can't wait to shred tomorrow.
All the canadian guys are starting in the second heat. we practise around 2:10pm PST and start the heat around 2:45. I'm rocking #25 or something around that.
check it out!

game time

The opening ceremonies the other night were unreal, which if you caught it on TV you'd probabaly agree with. The part you don't see is how long the night is for the athletes. It starts in the village around 3pm. We had a canadian get together in the village. Then you make your way over to the ice rink via bus. Hang out in the rink for a while as the other countries slowly filter out.
Being the host country, we walked in last, so we had a while to wait in the rink. Then it's a short walk over to GM place. We then all hang out in the bowels of the stadium in a HUGE lineup and slowly make our way around the inside. Having the performers and volunteers cheer us on as we passed by was awesome. Finally we get a view of the stadium and we're walking in. Words cannot describe how amazing that walk in was. the roar of the crowd was unreal! To make it 2 for 2, brad martin and i walked in together and enjoyed our second opening ceremonies. The whole night was amazing.

rob fagan and myself at the end of the night

Since then we've been hanging out in the village, work outs, eating, watching the games and playing some video games.
and yes, if you're wondering the hockey guys are staying in the village. In here they're just as good as everyone else. Marnie Mcbean (olympic gold medal rower/ works in the village with the atheletes now) just nearly kicked scott niedermyer out of the canada athlete's lounge, before realizing who he was. She doesnt follow hockey much. Without a hockey shirt and gear on i don't recognize the guys either really!

We finally got in the pipe last night, and the shape is really good. Little soft from the previous night's rain but there's a great crew working up there and it should be all good for the comp on wednesday.
Currently I'm watching the guys snowboard cross quals. I wishi i could make it up there to support my frineds but i've got my own schedule to follow until pipe is done.
Go canada!

1 day until the games Opening

Oops, i think i may have skipped a press conference this morning. Sorry Guy (our media dude). Something called "powder", called from the squamish backcountry.
After a few morning errands, my buddy Kyle and I went up for a little splitboard mission just up the road from my house. Rain in the parking lot, quickly turned to snow as we climbed higher onto the ridge. Getting to the top it was pretty much a whiteout and puking. Lots of deep snow for us to chuck ourselves blindly into. We mostly sessioned a small cliff area until dark and called it a day.
I making the move into the village tomorrow. Our pad is ridiculous!


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