Saturday, December 26, 2009

Happy Holidays, Enjoy Your New Years and Heads Up!

From The entire school and SMS Snowboarding Staff: Thank You for all you do to make this program what it is. Some do more than others but we all take turns doing what we can and it takes the individual effort of everyone involved to make this train roll the way the way it does. Serious gratitude to all. We hope that your spiritual holiday, your solstice, your family reunion or community celebration was fulfilling and that your new year is better than ever.
I had a great return home from fall camp to train in icy cold on hard packed park features with the pro-am crew. The two sided look at Connor Hudson's mad method says it all above. The rest of the elite crew had an extended session in Breckenridge around the dew tour and I am sure I'll be hearing about the mad progression there until next fall camp. I can't wait to see all the new tricks. Ian and Scott spent a long time away from home for that trip and deserve a big thanks. Mike came back from the Telluride World Cup Boardercross with a very productive result for Jackie even though she could not actually compete there due to a concussion. She has been invited to compete for the rest of the season on the WORLD CUP. Yes WORLD CUP in BX. I can only imagine how that feels. The other great news from that trip is that one of our great southern VT Heroes of the universe and Snowboarding in general, Ross Powers made the podium in the race out there gaining ground in his olympic quest. Could not happen to a better guy.
The Dev crew raced last week at Bromley and will round out their alpine season with one more double event there on the 3rd of jan. with two individual slalom races. Nationals spots have already been claimed by a few kids and more will be taken before school resumes. Also before school resumes Ian and I will travel to the Mammoth Mtn Grand Prix (x2) for Halfpipe and slopestyle with Joe, Eric B, Jenn, India, Shelby, Serena, Spencer, James and Hunter. We will get back just in time for a day of school and the start of the Rev Tour Season which is kicking off at Mount Snow. Practice day is the 13th. Pipe is the 14th and slope will happen on the 15th. The Rev Tour is the gateway to JR Worlds and the best nation-wide measuring stick relative to the progress of a High School Snowboard athlete/artist. Mount Snow's event may be the best place to get out and see our kids do their thing close to home this year so we hope you get that chance. That's it for your heads up but one more time: Thanks and enjoy the season.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Sunday GS Race at Bromley

Sunday despite it being around 10 degrees, lightly snowing and the wind blowing like a hurricane, went really well. With boards freshly tuned the Development team went to Bromley for a back to back GS race. For some team members this was their first time competing in GS and for others like Lena Kuchera and hard boot veterans Josh Cohen and Jennifer Hawkrigg it was race day as usual. Bromley had great breakfast and a great course. I had the tuning bench at the top to give the athletes some extra fast wax before each run which helped them edge out the competition. Here are the podiums,

GS Race #1

Female 12-13
1st Jennifer Hawkrigg

Female 14-15
1st Karen Kobayashi
2nd Marian Lobell

Male 14-15
3rd Josh Cohen

Female 16-17
1st Lena Kuchera

GS Race #2

Female 12-13
2nd Jennifer Hawkrigg

Female 14-15
1st Karen Kobayashi
2nd Marian Lobell

Male 14-15
3rd Josh Cohen

Female 16-17
2nd Lena Kuchera

Hope everyone has a great holidays,

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Overdue Footage

Here is that camp highlight footage I spoke of earlier. Don't know why it wants to load somedays and not others, computers have minds of their own. In this video you will see how well James, Spencer and Joe are riding at this point in the season. You will also enjoy my initial "favorite trick of the trip" (it might have been bumped by Eric's dub rodeo), Hunter Wood's transfer on the larger quarterpipe at Keystone.
Dew Tour is over for SMS and none too soon! Registration on the first night took 2 chaotic hours, many worthy SMS riders were snubbed, and those who made it in for HP were notified too late. Oh well, its not all about comps. This trip was a wild success for the Elite crew. So many tricks learned and complete mastery of the basics going into Jan. Not sure any of us want to come home, although we all miss family. See you all on Mon night.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Telluride World Cup

This is my first blog entry. The coaches have been doing an amazing job keeping everyone here up to date, and I am amazed by the content and thought that goes into each entry. Sometimes it is literary perfection, fanciful, yet spoken with truth and patience that only a father of daughters could have. Sometimes it is the core truth of our sport and you can feel the pride and dedication in Ian’s captivating entries. Whoever is making the entry it is always fun to read (and see) their reflections of the athletic process we are all involved in. Today I was reminded of this process that we try to instill in each and every
athlete we work with at Stratton Mountain School.

Jackie Hernandez and I have spent the last week in Telluride Colorado at her first FIS SBX World Cup. It is an exciting time in the snowboard world as these events serve as Olympic selection for both Boardercross and PGS. You can feel the energy in the athlete lounge. You can sense the camaraderie as the teams from around the world march in every day and all join together for meals. While watching the interaction of these athletes both old and new, sharing in their common craft, you can’t help but see and feel what truly embodies the Olympic spirit. Just to be included in this competition is an honor all by itself. This wonderful gift Jackie has worked very hard for, she wrote down four years ago as a goal, and now she has earned it. She has been enjoying every moment and I have seen the excitement in her eyes growing every day.

Yesterday during the PGS race I was engulfed in the action watching former athletes I have coached going against the best in the world trying to secure the same dreams that they had written down in my office in Steamboat over ten years ago. Now those athletes are at the pinnacle of their snowboarding careers and this was their first opportunity to secure a spot on the team headed to Vancouver. I was there to watch, give support, and awe at the proficient way they have learned to ride their snowboards. I had a great perch off to the side so as not to be distracted by the chitter chatter of the crowd.

It wasn’t until late in the day when I started to get cold that I had to move and change my view. It was only then I noticed Jackie watching intently, cheering, and encouraging the US riders. I had left her earlier in the day after some board/wax testing and advised her to get some rest and lay low for todays training. There were no other sbx athletes there at the bottom cheering. There were no other US riders present except for the ones who had their day finished early due to bad luck, or maybe a mistake in judgment. The only people left at this point in the day were family, coaches, and a few spectators. But Jackie was there. She was there excited and living this moment with the Olympic hopefuls and cheering them in their quest for a chance to represent their nation in the highest level of snowboard competition.

She was there not because I asked her to cheer, or because it seemed like the it was the right thing do. Jackie was there because she was feeding off of the excitement of competition and her love of snowboarding. Even as I approached her and told her it was getting late and the race would be going for some time and that she should get some food and rest, she stayed. She stayed until the last US rider came across and respectfully offered her support.

The process that our SMS coaches

teach athletes to engage in is very commendable and Jackie proved this to me today. She belongs here at the World Cup and has earned her right to be amongst some of the worlds best. More importantly she understand her role here and has committed herself to the whole process and wouldn’t dream of leaving any piece out. The idea of making good choices, putting out maximum effort, setting goals, then outlining a plan and sticking to that plan is what we told her creates success. Jackie has embraced these concepts and reminded me of an important piece today. The journey is as important as the outcome and today Jackie was enjoying the full experience of being invited to compete on snowboarding’s biggest international SBX stage.

As coaches we try to guide each athlete along their way, we try to help them make good decisions and we try to instill our love for snowboarding. Their comprehension of what we teach is completely up to them. When the time comes for competition we are there for support and to offer advice but ultimately it is there own will and focus that guide them through.

Today was our only two-hour block of sbx training. This is the typical format on the World Cup and the riders are expected to be at a level where this time allows them to successfully inspect and then navigate the course at full speed. This process is not new for me but it was very new for Jackie. I could not hold her hand through the course. I could not help her navigate the twenty-nine features that the Olympic course designer Jeff Iaxia had laid out for the athletes. I could not remind her during her runs to double here or triple there, to avoid this bump or to make sure she popped for the triple step down. I could only offer support and provide feedback on how she was doing. I could remind her in the start of our plan and encourage her that she was doing great and that it would all come together.

I had to trust in our own process. I had to trust in the early morning dryland, the physical testing, the ongoing importance of academics, the importance of preparation and everything else we put into it. I had to trust that we had taken care of all the pieces of the puzzle that we could. I was reminded of the athletes I had taken to their first World Cup. I looked around and could see several US team members that I had gone through this very same process with years before. I thought of the action yesterday at the PGS hill and the smiles and the excitement of dreams being fulfilled or the tears and frustration of dreams being denied for another day. I thought of Jackie standing there freezing but refusing to leave until the last US rider had finished. I realized that Jackie was as prepared as those athletes before her were at their first World Cup. She was beginning her very own realization of making the US team and now had a chance to prove her worth. She did so today through her actions and her energy and of course her contagious smile. This story does not end with Jackie landing on the podium or even competing in the race on Friday morning. Jackie took a spill on her fifth run today during training and sustained a concussion. Scary moments at first, but after a sled ride down and a trip in the ambulance it quickly became apparent she was going to be ok. The CT scan was negative and she is comfy and resting in bed and being looked after by the team girls as I write.

Today on training day she stood beside Olympians, World Champions, and the best representatives from over 20 nations across the globe. She did it with guts and determination and a passion that will serve her well in her future years as a competitor. She will not be able to race on Friday but the experience is still intact and I know she will come back stronger.

Today I realized a greater sense in the value of this athletic process we preach. Of course there are trick tips and technical advice that we can provide along the way, and a good eye and solid support can help lead an athlete to success. The real value however is rooted in the development of good sportsmanship, strong moral and ethical values, and the ability to create and realize athletic and lifelong dreams. This very process provided

Jackie with confidence, knowledge, and the ability to begin to realize her future in snowboarding or anything else life may throw her way. It also provided me with insight, reflection, comfort and security knowing that we had done our job well. Both athlete and coach mutually benefited today from this process and herein I found my inspiration for sharing our journey. We wish Jackie the quickest of recoveries and I am looking forward to having her back on snow soon!

Happy Holidays,


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Just Another Foggy Grey Day in Little Old VT.

An old man went for a stroll up the old Rueben Snow farm in the rain this morning. Around forty years ago the farm became Carinthia ski area. Twenty years back one of the various owners of "Mount Snow" bought the farm and it's defunct ski spot. It might have been Killington Ski Limited, It was somewhere between the ownership eras of founding owner Walt Schoenknect and Les Otten's American Skiing Company. Who cares really ? The name of Carinthia was resurrected as a whole seperate peak of Mount Snow. The current and relevant ownership is a family from Pennsyvania and while they own plenty of property they are not particularly interested in Real Estate, I'm told. Fun Parks. "Ski areas". If your lucky they will buy a mountain near your home, because this is what the old man saw when he walked up the hill...that part of Carinthia currently being referred to as Nitro (yes just like the guy on american gladiator!) on your trail map. From the bottom up he first encounters a four foot wide by ten foot long plastic covered box nearly buried in snow. A little further and the next similar feature is six feet longer and only 30 inches wide. Beside this on the hill is a five inch wide steel bumper that is ten to twelve feet long set like a bench in the fall line. Odd he thinks but the kids seem to like it. He hikes on up and over the varying terrain groomed into the snow and finds first one and then another jump just above it. Twelve footers. He's not totally clear on the concept but he thinks he sees some switch methods going down on these little jumps. On he goes up the nearly slushy corduroy snow between the steep plastic covered bench and a similar bumper. sparks and colors. he needs a quick breather. He steps through the rollers and finds what looks like a ten foot cut off of a lift tower. Pretty slippery.
A kid named Kyle has style that bends one knee alot and the board a little. Across the flat, and upward between a trapezoidal bench and a bumper that goes up and then down. Past a kid laying on the snow glorying in his own wipeout and the too-loud music from the wires in his ears is run over by a runaway four foot corrugated pipe that is rolling down the hill. Good thing that boy wore a helmet.He couldn't hear the warning. Another jump twice as big as the first two. Up and between more bumpers and benches. One dark steel rainbow. He'd sit on a bench but its not a safe place to sit. "Yahoos" he thinks. Three more jumps. A bunch of boys overshoot the first- the third of the three from their direction. Anyone can see you are supposed to land on the downhill built into the jump. They spin forward and backward, left and right, CAB AND SWITCH FRONTSIDE holding onto their boards as if the bindings don't work so well. Benches everywhere and no place to sit. Bumpers mounted on the slope as if they expect a collision from on high. A big tractor tire someone forgot to clear out has been plowed upright right next to a pole that looks to be falling over downhill. The old man is doing math in his head as he hikes up to the top of the chairlift. A secret esoteric formula revealing a timeless reality in it's present incarnation. Long forgotten symbols punctuating the chalkboard in his head, a drifted look between the creases and mumbles on his lips and face...Nine jibs, six jumps, one crew... The five big kids in brown, grey, black or brown and grey and black and the little one wearing all the one, carry the camera, ought to know better, times eleven laps. That makes ninety nine jibs plus sixty six jumps per kid, divided by the time it took me to do half my morning walk, about two hours and let me see here YES, add one corrugated steamrolling and it all adds up to equal: The death of monotony. The SMS Pro-Am Snowboarders, Killing it on the old Rueben Snow place. They sure do look happy to be back home, and he walked off toward the "sunbrook" area in the drizzle.

photos: top rt. Kyle Dorfman fs three
mid-left Cameron Howe shifty fs three
bottom rt. Dan Landy sbs five.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Moving on to the Dew tour

Earth to Kirk, what's up with Elite 2010?

Sorry for the lack of bloggin, the other coaches have been holding it down for me for a week or so. Been busy, but what good times! Progression, competitive success, footage and photos did not fall by the wayside like bloggin did!
We had a great time at the Grand Prix. My three guys managed to avoid the hype and pressure put on other riders, and threw down some of the best runs of their young lives. I'm quite proud of JAMES HAFFNER, JOE MENSCH and SPENCER SHAW, for competing at the sports highest level while keeping cool and having fun.
I have attached a short video of some of the camp highlights. In the video you can see James, Joe and Spencer's runs and judge for yourselves. Just realize that since last year, these guy's chosen HP runs have developed significantly. Joe has 2 900s and James has a 900, an inverted 720 and a 1080. Spencer starts off with a 1080 and boosts the largest straight airs of the team (although Joe Mensch fans may dispute).
Been feeling bad about neglecting slopestyle training (for the first time in 10 years of coaching). Poor India and Beaucheface, patiently waiting and hitting little kid rails at Copper. Tomorrow they shall be unleashed on Breck and will enjoy a week of park riding.

Having trouble loading the GP/Highlights video, and now I have a new video to share. ERIC BEAUCHEMIN landed a double back rodeo today at Breck. The double flip moves are setting pros apart from has-beens and Eric is now one of the few who can land them in slope. Hunter Wood is next in line and I imagine that line extends a few persons behind him. James Haffner and Joe Mensch are learning back rodeos, each adding their own style.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

We are still getting some great shots from Ali kaukas . Keep checking the blog for more great pictures .

Friday, December 11, 2009

Elite Girls hang Tough in Grand Prix

The seasons first of four Olympic qualifying events kicked off yesterday on another single digit morning. The US Snowboard Grand Prix is the nations undisputed top level competition series and this year is proving better than ever. All of the worlds best female halfpipe riders were there and just to get on the start list is multi year effort of training, strategizing and competing to become qualified. SMS Girls Shelby Simpson, Jenn Cohen and Serena Shaw lined up with the best and held their FIS seeding with style. With Shelby barely walking two days earlier and Serena only spinning for the recent three days of training due to injuries the girls made a sound showing.
Senior Jenn Cohen lead the way in 39th place. Serena and Shelby were 41st and 42nd respectively. I am very proud of the effort and ability to hold thier composure against the best from around the globe.
Top three qualifiers were Gretchen Bleiler, Kelly Clark and Soko Yamaoka of Japan. Huge news for SMS alumnus Ellery Hollingsworth who qualified in 6th overall for finals, making her the number four american. Right square in the hunt for 2010 Olympic berth. Lizzy Beerman was going for the big run but her fs 900 caused her some problems in the first run and she didn't land it in run two, she finished 23rd riding to compete for finals. Pretty cool way to go.
Spencer, Joe and Hames are competing today and im heading up momentarily to catch the action and enjoy some all around shredding with my crew before heading back Sunday. Woodward training this afternoon will be followed by an big air exhibition tonight.

photos; top Jenn Cohen fs-three. Bottom Serena Shaw boosted method air.

Grand Prix kick off

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Today was 10 degrees and the snow was blowing sideways but that didn't stop the Development Team from riding all day then going to Woodward for a session. We started the day with the usual stretching and jumped on the lift to take some free runs and work on different drills where Jennifer Hawkriggs was making some great turns. We de-thawed at lunch and got right back out there to hike some pipe. After tireless laps over the past couple weeks we worked on one hitters today. Marian Lobell, Karen Kobayashi and Lena Kuchera made some laps through working on switch riding and some 360's. Chip Linton, Scottie Sweitzer and Conner Callen were all landing smooth 360's. Jaime Charron after only riding a half pipe for the past two weeks was only a couple degrees from landing back flips. Rockstar of the day Josh Cohen landed his first ever frontside 720 in the pipe on only his second try, BIG CONGRATULATIONS.


Monday, December 7, 2009

Worlds Greatest Halfpipe Continues to Provide.

Sunday was a day off of snow but not lacking for action. Again it was great timing for a day off as it was snowing lightly all day up there. The Dev and pro-am riders went to Woodward for skate and jump training while the elite kids were grounded from action. In case you forget that this sport is not for the faint of heart I am going remind you. We lost a tooth for a short while but it has been put back in if you can believe that. Please believe if it were your son or daughter you would know already and that everything was handled professionally. Big Thanks to Phoebe Mills- (Mills-Shimpeno?) for helping out from the Woodward side. If we didn't have so many supporters in the shred world we (Scotty) might have had a tougher time heading to the perfect neighborhood dentist. But These guys made it happen and our partner in shred is comfortable and solid on the road to recovery. It is too early to say who but My man is sleeping soundly fifteen feet from where I'm not sleeping.
Saturday was another great day of training and My girls out here made me proud once again. I had to sit team tough girl Phoebe Novello to rest her ankle and I am pretty sure she has forgiven me by now but that is not so easy for her. She wants to ride hard every chance she gets and does but progression requires close to perfect health. Her team-mates did not waste the day and pushed their own personal progression with every respect for the opportunity. Serena Shaw who has also had to negotiate the waters of partial injury regained her front five on friday and made difficult but productive steps to re-aquire her back five saturday. I was impressed by her drive and pity the halfpipe that challenges her when healthy. She will destroy it.
Jen Cohen went large and rode clean and stomped out numerous Cabellarial five forties.

India stephenson cranked out her carves switch and reg. and spent some pm time getting front boards back on the down rails.She also progressed off the fake snow jump from straight airs to a solid back flip into the pit. Kiley K learned some new grabs on her backside wall and then at woodward in the afternoon, she darn near perfected the backside rodeo before moving on to the legit, corked back fives (off axis spinning) off the snow flex jump that could also be a premonition of a halfpipe Mctwist.
Shelby's hard work continued to pay off in the 22 foot pipe where her progressive run now includes her back and front five to go with her skate style tricks.
The girls had a long and productive day before indoctrinating Kiley Kennedy into the sushi eating snowboarder lifestyle with a dinner at Kemosabe. We were joined by our gracious and helpful hostess Karen Shaw who has been so kind as to allow ten strange young snowboarders and Coach Mike Sullivan into her home for this trip. The girls loved it. The riding is continuing to progress and team continues to become a unit

Photos from top; Shelby hellside air to Fake. Jen and Josh Cohen. Kiley corked bs 5

Saturday, December 5, 2009

SHREDgression Pictures



Today was another fun filled day of shredding and progression. We woke to a blue bird day which was very welcomed after two days of frigid weather.  The Pro-am team had another intense game of ''snow'' on the upper rail features. For those who don't know what the game of snow is, it is a game similar to the basketball game ''horse''. Kirk's crew was working hard at getting runs in a busy skier filled half pipe. Keeping their eyes open for people dropping from both walls, the elite team was working on their daily SHREDgression. Dave, as always, brought positive encouragement to his girl rippers who were in the mix at the pipe. Last but not hard to see from the base was Sully in his new neon yellow DC puffy at the top of the half pipe. Sully stood till the end of the day critiquing his crew who were making endless laps through the over-worked pipe.
 There is snow in the forecast and we are hoping that the meteorologists are right for once!
  We are lucky enough to have guest photographer Ali Kaukas capturing all the hot snowboarding action. Check out the pictures! 

Friday, December 4, 2009

blocking vs.snaking

-Sthompson on kids lining up IN the drop.

What it does

I have to admit I forgot how intimidating below zero weather could be to a high school girl trying to work her freestyle skills. How tough for anyone even, (I didn’t see Mr.White out there today…). But I was comfortable and happy in this weather. Perhaps it is the DC puffy coat and the DC denim over half inch thick patagucci longjohns, but I don’t think that was it. The striking black and white wingtip colorway of the comfortable and highly effective DC SuperPark Boots kept my toes working. My NXTZ neckie kept my sensitive and many times frostbitten face warm and protected. Its not even pink- my face that is. Said neck gaiter is a double layered non goggle fogging green, black and brown camoflague. No pink on that either and it was a recent gift from alumnus Jeremy Thompson. These NXTZ items are all the rage according to my housemate Dan Landy. Dan thinks they are about as cool as glassy swells. I think it’s a pretty good gaiter and appreciate it but I don’t think that was it either. My Smith Double Layer Beanie and Smith Prodigy goggles? I don’t think so. The source of my warmth and fine attitude on such a tough day I mean. No I am pretty sure, in fact I am very sure that I was warm and comfortable “standing around” out there at nine thousand feet above sea level in the ten below air on creaky dry snow because of one special girl. She was not intimidated and she did not take a break and she hiked and dropped and hiked and dropped and then hiked and dropped switch…Oh did I say switch? Yes switch and not only that but switch backside and again and again. And she rode better today than yesterday and better yesterday than the day before and this pattern has gone on for each day no regard for the weather. (Yeah we took yesterday off but I'm establishing her pattern. Her story. )

Shelby Simpson.

What else can I say? I can say NO-ONE does her run. And I can say that Im sorry for the late start to ski season and the lengthening of Kayaking season back home. It’s on me. Or maybe it is Shelby’s fault that it was seventy degrees warmer back in VT than it was here today. Everyone knows my heart is at home and today my heart was so swollen with pride at the work she did that it not only kept me warm out here but you can open your doors to the warm air and listen to the rivers tell her story. Believe it. Riding is not about contests and it is not about pictures and there is no picture for this story because riding is about heart and you don’t see heart. You see what it does and today I see Shelby Simpson showing me what riding is. Thanks SS.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pro-am and Development day off

Still Feels Right

Today the elite programs are off snow. When I woke to nearly an inch of fresh snow to take James, Randall and Lena to an "0-dark hundred" am yoga class and then saw it still snowing afterwards, I knew our timing was still right on. Taking a day off from pipe training when the skies are blue and returning to train in flat light is one of the more frustrating occurrences in past camps. Call me a fair weather coach but I believe in building confidence. Grit will follow.
Likewise the Dev and Pro-Am crews took yesterday off and they benefited from the slashing and freeriding provided today. The HalfPipe Season is not quite so impending for them and they loved riding more of the mountain. Ian and the Elite Boys are over at Woodward skating and hucking into foam block pits. The girls in full restoration mode were seeking out massages and shops. You may or may not see some Ian Kirk Training photos coming your way tonight but I thought these two below here reflected the SMS Team Unity pulling together tighter by the day. Peace and Thanks once again.

Bromance. RS+TTK forever... Kyle D, Oran P and Ian K. Not Planned

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

SMS Snowboarding: Right Place Right Time.

When it comes to playing on snow, being in the right place at the right time is crucial. When it comes to training the up and coming national class of competitive snowboarders there is no place in the world right now to compare with Copper Mtn. If there is another halfpipe on the planet I can promise you it is not as good as this one. So once again this year, "hats off" to Stratton Mountain School, our Snowboard PD Mike Mallon and the parents who make this training trip happen. Your athletes and children are working to find their early season skills in a hurry and doing so alongside the worlds best.
Ian Kirk, Scott Johnston and Mike Sullivan have been here for a week already and are working on snow, in the gym, the skatepark and in the homes taking the kids through every phase of their days.

22 feet of elliptical transition. Snowplex Jumps and Safe Landings.

I stayed home for Thanksgiving and likewise for most of my Elite Girls Crew. In our third day on snow together for the season we are finding ours skills returning as we get used to altitude, edging, speed and impact. Serena took a tough crash last week so she is taking the time to focus on her straight airs (non rotation tricks) until riding is more pain free. I know she is frustrated. She is one of the most driven athletes I have been around. Check out how she deals with the pain.
Stale fish is the name of the trick. Ow?

Jenn Cohen is starting her senior year on snow with some increased amplitude to compliment her solid stance and smoothe style.

Frontside air 25feet above the floor.

Kiley K fitting in and a bit above.

New SMS snowboard athlete Kiley Kennedy joined the program at the Denver airport and has made a seamless transition, giving every appearance of a seasoned team member. While the rest of the crew has been bouncing and skating, training, eating , breathing and watching snowboarding KK has been playing soccer at Choate. The change in her riding in three days shows promise for another great season. KK was an age group national freestyle champ last year. Welcome aboard.
Senior Slopestyle standout India Stephenson is working her edges and using the pipe training to build those slope skills. Tomorrow IK is taking her to Breck to ride some jumps and rails. Her idea of a good ride is stomping a long spin en rte to a steel rail. I think she will love it.
Phoebe Novello is nursing that sprained ankle from a month ago but she says the chairlift is what hurts the most. So PN rides the chair switch and hikes a bit. She does not stop. It was tough to choose which photo to show of Phoebe.

How about a nice big lien air. YUP.

Finally I am proud to report that senior Shelby Simpson, a four year SMS student athlete is daily cementing her grand dame status on the Team. Shelby is the proud owner of one of the nations more progressive pipe runs and her strength on board right now is telling me that the progression is going to come with amplitude this year.

Front side air.

We left the snow for the Woodward
indoor skate, and air awareness gym. The facility is THE state of the art jump training center with foam pits next to trampolines and beneath snowplex jumps. Surrounding these great fixtures are numerous skate ramps and bowls. I cant help but see something similar as part of the SMS campus someday. Our clinic guide was none other than Rick Shimpeno (longtime sms coach) accompanied by former Green Mtn Series Halfpipe Overall Champ and SMS alum Kim Stacey. Even on these busiest days the girls lament the absence of Mak T here and wish for her speedy return. These girls will train on snow at Copper again tomorrow and kickbox at the Rec Center . Yoga in the am and rest on weds.