Monday, January 31, 2011

A Day With the Pro/Ams

With Scotty J on the road with the BX crew, I had the pleasure of riding with the Pro/Am gang. I took great pride in my work as the Pro/Am coach in the past and have fond memories of days with Waker, Haffner, Hahn, Malanga, Simpsons, Stacy, Tikos, Ellery, Lizzy.... ad nauseam. It was good to see that the current crew is carrying the torch. These guys are hungry and skilled. Dan Landy took the Rider of the Day nod for his style, valor and dog-off-the-leash approach to 5 different parks.
Marion and Meg Tierney kept up with the wild boys and locked into long rails and aired out of the superpipe. Chip Linton took to the Inferno jumps and landed back 5s and switch nosepresses in the Nitro park. Connor Callan landed large back 5s and his method off the rail caught my eye. Jack Griffen was a blast to ride with and made sure he got some footage. Switch back 3s and big back 3s in Inferno were just part of his day.
I expect to be riding with these guys for a few more days and I certainly have my hands full. Vessels of progression tapped and flowing, I will do my best to channel the deluge!






Marion Lobell Locked In





Saturday, January 29, 2011

Redemption Song








Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hunter Wood Wins Training Today

What a day!!!! I gotta say I back Mt Snow for unrivaled east coast slope training. The pipe is alright too, but the slope courses offer it all. Check this short video from today. Lots of ripping occurred today, the highlight being HUNTER WOOD STOMPING DOUBLE FLIPS off the biggest jump on the hill. Hunter was close last year and has been wisely waiting for the right day to get back to it. Today was the day. So sick Hunter!
Other highlights included Phoebe's massive switch backside 180, Dorfman's front 720s, Hudson's rail work, Quincy's step-up 180, and Makayla's front boards. This crew is a blast to ride with.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Carinthia Weekend Number One: 2011

Spectacular riding in cold weather pretty much sums up the weekend of USASA/Southern Vermont Series contests at the Carinthia Parks of Mount Snow. The coaching staff is proud to be a part of a crew that shows its love for snowboarding every time they get the chance. We see it all week long, day after day, week after week. When the bibs come out and the competitors line up and the temps don't rise it's no distraction to that part of the field that has the passion every day. Thanks for the effort, the courage and the smiles.
As usual we travelled in style to train all week.
When the results posted each day we had the usual suspects winning multiple podiums from the elite crew. Names like Wood, Tierney and Novello being called have become how we know the standards remain high. It was great to see Connor Hudson riding healthy and strong again after a few bang ups in the past couple seasons and a small one to start this year. It was also a nice view of Kyle Dorfman styling the slope course out.
While our series is always the best run series in the country it's too bad the judges missed that run. I can't see any other way he was 12 points out of third place with a Cover-worthy backside 180 to stomped sbs 540 to front seven jump line. Its supposed to be how you do what you do that scores and luckily Kyle knows that and will keep his runs focused and clean week after week. Again I love our series and understand that these things happen. I just want our kids to understand that just like a riders job, a judges job is difficult too. We all come back week after week because this is what we like to do.
Karen K warming up with a sweet FS Mute
There were also some exceptionally strong signs from some newcomers to the team. Tanner Barret dominated his age group by winning both events on his home mountain. A historical note on Tanner's home Mountain versus the rest of our "Home Mountain's". Tanner's dad has been working in the Mount Snow ski school for possibly twenty years as well as building stone walls in the summer. TB is from generations of Southern Vermonters that go back all the way. I don't even count and say "second or third Gen local", I mean all the way. It's a rarity and a testament to the school to have kids like him with us. Its just plain to cool to ride with em and his work ethic goes way back too. He earned his medals riding hard day after day, the weekend is a topping. Keep it up.
Second year athlete and rising multi discipline star Karen Kobayashi had another double podium weekend splitting Golds and Silvers with Makayla Tierney.
Xander amping it up with his first hit BS Air
 Another multi-discipline athlete whose star is on the rise is young Xander Raith. This winter term shredder took two silvers out of the huge breaker boys division followed each day by partner JP McArdle.
JP practicing it just like he did it on saturday FS Three-Tail
Young pitbull Meghan Tierney continued her winning ways with a sliver and a gold. Though no stranger to SMS Meghan is also a first year team rider and she goes huge BTW.
I could go on all day about my Dev Crew. Im super stoked on their enthusiasm and work on the hill but I'm going to leave out all the just missed podiums from those young guns.
Im pretty sure newcomers Peter Cerulo and Ezra Racine took medals home for pipe yesterday but the results are not posted yet for pipe. These guys shred and you will see their names weekly if I know anything about anything.
alright alright-Ezra is the kid who landed a front ten in the Hood Rev Slope event last week. Fifth place in his first Rev Tour? Yikes! Peter is the first threat to Chris Tierney's lock on King-of-style title which he wrestled from Haffy Hafner which he wrestled from Jeremy Thompson which he wrestled from Chris Waker which he wrestled from Danny Davis...
You can see what I mean...Peter Cerulo flattening it.

We got a new Kitty. Lulu.

I know I left some people out but not if you read this...I am super excited and proud of everybody's efforts and hard work out there. That pipe was scary hard in the single digit afternoon yesterday. First heat slope on saturday, you guys had it too easy, dont get used to that kind of course. That was as good as it gets in the january "minors" so Im glad everybody ripped so hard. We know it aint easy putting on a bib. Keep showing up and i promise you and you alone will get the rewards.

Huge congrats and bows-of-awe to Spencer-Certified Mac-Shaw and Jeremy-Stompsy-Thompson. The world showed up to compete and or watch the Dew Tour this weekend and you two guys beat or impressed everyone but five people on the entire planet in Halfpipe and slopestyle.
Whoa and behold two young men loving their runs.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Specncer Shaw QuaIifies first into Dew Finals

Spencer Shaw is having a GREAT winter. In his first two months alone he put up results that would make his year, and he isn't stopping. The startlists for tonight's Killington Dew Tour HP Prelims were short and exclusively big names. It was an honor just to see Spencer and Serena's names on those lists. The weather was cold, and visibility was short due to snowfall. Time for VT riders to shine. Both Shaw's charged the icy pipe and, although Serena just missed the cut, Spencer came out way on top. Ahead of #2 by over 5 points at one point, Spencer enjoyed the evening with an early, safe lead. Wish I had some good photos to post, but all you would see would be snowflakes. Enjoy the short video instead and witness Serena Shaw's frontside spins with your own eyes! Big day tomorrow, but much of the victory was achieved tonight. Oh Yeah, Jeremy Thompson made the cut to slope finals today too. Great news for all us JT fans out there.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bromley By Storm

There were only two inches of fresh snow when we arrived but there was a good six inches on the side of the course when I left the Bromley Mtn SBX Track at the end of the day. The weather may have slowed the course but the results were more of the same for SMS as we saw Southern Vermont Series title's clinched by Josh Cohen, Maverick Shaw, Karen Kobayashi, and Meghan Tierney. These were the two day in a row champs of their age groups but we had great racing again by the whole crew and most of the team probably qualified for nationals with their strong two day performances.
Rather than list everybody's second thirds and fourths I just want to say I'm proud, lucky and grateful to be up there with these guys and gals. Most impressive improvements for me were Scott Sweitzer and Jack Griffin learning from day one what they earned a chance to hold onto in day two. These guys each looked like seasoned vets in their final runs of the second day. Not just winning the holeshot in their age group final heat but holding on for silver medals against fast smart competition. Thanks fellas.
Final Note: Meghan 'Pitbull' Tierney flexes her tuck like a world cup sbx racer. I can't wait to see if there is a twelve year old girl out there that can hang with this one. WAY TO RACE. Overall final heat winner.
Griffin and Cohen leading the Youth Final

All SMS Breaker Boys Final 

Knees to chest? Check.

Stale-fish in the Gulch, compliments of Xander Raith.
Today we went back to work at Carinthia for the fast approaching Slope and Pipe events taking place this weekend. Some funny glazed corduroy mixed with some late am grooming to make for a nice day getting back on jumps and rails. Tomorrow we ride Halfpipe and hike, and ride halfpipe...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

VT History Lesson

School was called off today due to yet more snow. This did not stop the Bromley BX across the way and I figured I'd make some use of the day myself. Hardy souls Hunter Wood, Connor Hudson and Connor Davis all joined me to hike for powder turns at Timber Ridge. The private resort sits on the back of Magic Mt and is owned by the Waker Family. There are no lifts, but the trails are cut and lined with snowmobile tracks perfect for hiking up.
Hiking an area is the best way to be introduced, and Waker's Acres is a historic stash. A great powder run was had by all, and some backflips were thrown by some. Back to work tomorrow.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Single Digits, Clear Eyes, Pure Hearts and A Legit SBX Crew @ Bromley

Breaker Boys All SMS Final
Southern Vermont series was back in action today at Bromley Mtn and SMS showed up in uncommon force. An SMS competitor won every age-group we had an entry in today. The kids that were home this week for training were well prepped and well waxed and made the most of the opportunity to get ready. The kids who came back from Rev Tour SBX in Oregon were practicing in a much more technical course and likewise took their opportunities for great time trials and strong heats. Highlights include Josh Cohen's survival of a hotly contested first two turns in the youth men's final. These boys all held the line and two riders came clear of a dust up. Josh passed the other survivor out of that pile in the final features of the course. Josh also took third in the overall Heat. Karen Kobayashi had incredible starts and flexion that helped her run faster out of each feature she pumped. KK took her age group and the women's overall Final Heat as well. She was followed by strong races from Marian Lobell in the youth wmns group and chased hard by Breaker Girl's Champ Meghan Tierney in that overall Final. Meghan was followed in third in her age group by Liz Hernandez.
Scott Sweitzer won starts all day
 The Breaker Boys from SMS took the top five spots in the days largest age group category. Maverick Shaw won the day in that group and was challenged by Xander Raith in second, Scott Sweitzer in third. Andrew Tousignant and JP McArdle followed in fourth and fifth and I can tell you these freestyle guys were looking solid out there running heats with the seasoned SBX crew. Those are a quick highlight show but it was great to see all of our riders making it clear through their first heats after trials and get to keep running the track and get the experience of a crowded line. Little gets the heart racing like having your line challenged and holding it out there at full speed in the single digit weather. I was very proud to be part of the crew and glad they all had their chances and successes. Tomorrow we are back at it on the same track in some very different weather. But once again the forecast calls for a GREAT DAY OF SBX.
Liz H in lane 1 on rt. Meghan T in lane 3

Josh Showing that championship form.

whatzup pitbull!

Serena Shaw lands on the Podium a couple more times today at the Burton AM Slope Style.

Serena sharing the top of the podium for her frontside 540 which earned her Best Trick for the women.

Serena on the podium for her 2nd place finish in the Burton AM Slope Style.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Serena Shaw and Michael Perle Win the Burton AM Halfpipe.

Serena Shaw and Michael Perle on top of the Burton AM podium.

Another rainy day in Oregon at Mt Hood Meadows for the Burton AM halfpipe event. But it was well worth it for Serena and Michael who both won earning $750 and a spot into the US Open.

After practice the event officials decided to do a one hour jam for the men and 45 min jam for the women due to the weather.

Michael Perle was doing the biggest airs of the day. He was nailing the top part of his run every time but having some problems with the weather and the soft pipe at the bottom in his first few runs. On his last run he started off with a big backside air, into a front side 900, to a backside 540, then back to back 720's, ending with a alley opp mute for the win.

Serena went right to work during her heat. She landed a run with a nice front side 540 her first run. Her winning run was front side 720, cab 360, stalefish, backside 540 stalefish and finished with a nose grab. Serena also won Best Trick for her backside 540 for an bonus $250.

Serena has the Burton Am slope style tomorrow and Michael has SBX Hole Shot Wed/Thurs. Hopefully they keep their podium train going as they are focused and hungry for more.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Phoebe Novello KOs first Main Event

Fresh off a Rev Tour poduim, Phoebe Novello raced up to snowy NH to win the first Main Event at Bretton Woods. A clutch performance indeed. The only girl to step to the large jump during finals, Phoebe laid it on the line with a massive backside 360 in her last run and tasted top spot on the now familiar poduim. All the way from Canada.....

Mt Hood Meadows OR Rev Tour SBX.

Marian Lobell , Josh Cohen and Michael Perle getting ready to battle the weather.

The rain decided to come in for the snowboardcross event at the Rev Tour. We had four SMS athletes compete. It was Josh Cohen's, Karen Kobayashi's and Marian Lobell's first Rev Tour SBX. They all rode hard, improved their speed every run and earned some FIS points. Michael Perle also competed and was ready to race on his new Oxess board that he has been training on.

In time trials Josh placed 24th. Marian 13th. Karen 4th and Michael Perle 2nd.

Due to weather and the delay they decided to take 16 men and 8 women to the heats instead of the normal 32 and 16.

In Karen's first heat she when down and wasn't able to catch up to the leaders. In the girls consolation heat Karen got out front and won the heat for her 5th place finish. Karen rode some great lines down the course and carried good speed through the banked turns. 5th at her first Rev Tour SBX is a great result.

Michael Perle was on fire all day. His board was running fast thanks to Scotty J. He rode smart and made some clean exciting passes. In the final heat he was battling for second most of the race as he was being blocked until the step down were he flew by the other rider. He did not have enough room to catch up and battle for 1st but gave it his all. Congratulations to Mike on his first Rev SBX podium.

I enjoyed working with the sbx riders and sharing the knowledge that I've learned the last few years competing in this discipline. I'm proud of them all and look forward to the next events.

Michael Perle on the podium receiving his 2nd place award.

Friday, January 14, 2011

An Honor to see Ellery Honored

I'm writing this quick update from Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. Most know that I love NH and feel the vibe as soon as I cross the Connecticut River. WIth all the new snow the drive was scenic, making travel a pleasure. It will be our first taste of Wednesday's storm and we can't wait. Hunter, Phoebe, Quincy and Connor are with me for the first Main Event slope event.

We all just arrived back from Portland last night. On our way out of the city our friend Travis Moore arranged for a tour of the Nike offices in Portland. I could write a two page blog on that tour alone, but wanted just to share a quick highlight. All the buildings are named after sports icons and the walkways are lined with plaques and banners for Nike's endless list of famous athletes. My eyes were peeled for one in particular and before long we stood below it. What an honor to see Ellery Hollingsworth's image in one of the largest athlete shrines in the world. Snowboarding, much like Ellery, has come a long way.

Bonus shot of Hunter Wood at Rev Slope

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Phoebe Novello, Mak Tierney and Ezra Racine Come Up in Slopestyle

Today was the day we have been waiting for which falls into the recent trend of good weather slopestyle days (Copper excluded). Clear skies allowed us to see that Mt Hood had been towering over us for the past few days. The view is majestic and is an attitude changer from the grey skies and low visibility. Crisp and clear as they say. Perfect weather for slope and the event ran smoothly and on time.
Today's big stories involve Phoebe Novello and Ezra Racine. After making finals in HP yesterday (finishing 5th instead of 6th which I blogged yesterday) Phoebe made finals again today and put herself in 2nd position on the podium at the end of the day. Switch back 180, backside 360, gap to boardslide and lipslide to fakie was the run that she put down time after time. After struggling in comps for the past year, Phoebe has arrived and many are proud of this young ripper. Turned some heads she did.
Ezra Racine showed up with his game face and stomped each and every run of the day. After a run with a cab 5 to front 7, Ezra told me he wanted to convert the 7 into a 1080. This is no small task and I had my doubts. Looking in his eyes and hearing the conviction in his voice, I had to give him the nod. He proceeded to land the next three 1080s he attempted, two being in finals. He had not even attempted one this year and this trick is no joke. He opened my eyes for sure and ended up just off the podium in 5th.

Graduate James Haffner continued his comeback streak by winning today's event. His run oozed with style while others threw their bodies into sloppy double flips. Cab 540 to backside 900 followed by smooth and tech rail tricks won the day. Let me remind you that he came in second in pipe yesterday. He won the Rev Tour for sure.
Other highlights of the day include Mak Tierney who made finals and ended up in 6th place and Dan Landy who landed a great first run which started off with a switch back 540. I have been waiting to see this kid land a run for a while now, and he came through today. Serena Shaw was off to a great second run, but fell off the last rail. This small mishap was crushing as it kept her out of finals. Good to see her riding slope with the aggression she brought to HP yesterday. Kyle Dorfman and Jamie Charron also landed clean runs in quals, but missed the competitive cut into finals.
Our hearts go out to Biba Turnbull who overshot the second jump by 30 yards. As I write this I am under the impression she broke her collarbone. She is in the hospital with Ross Powers who will fill us in later tonight.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Serena Shaw Wins Hood Rev Tour

Its been a wild start to the SMS Hood Rev Trip. We arrived for two cold, windy and crowded days at Mt Hood Meadows. When I say crowded I mean it. Traffic backed up for miles, 45 minute drives taking 2 hours, parking in the outer lots and waiting in line 15 minutes to load a bus, no seats in the cafe.......
Practice went alright yesterday and there were some great pow turns to be had. Today was the Halfpipe event and slope practice. The slope course needs some work for tomorrow, but the pipe was decent today (albeit a bit icy). The girls attacked the pipe first.
Serena Shaw was on point from the start of practice until the end of the day when she stood atop the podium. She won practice, qualified for finals 3 points ahead of the next rider and finished 4 points ahead of the second place finisher. She is nailing her frontside 720s and rode with confidence and power.

Phoebe Novello also made finals and broke out of the contest slump she has been in. Her coaches have recognized her talent for years now, and it was great to hear onlookers taking notice and other riders talking about how good she is as she dropped in. She is the only girl who spun in all four directions in her run although she fell on her switch back 3 at the end of her first run and missed the frontside 3 to cab 3 combo in her second run. She just missed landing her finals runs and placed 6th, but this is an amazing and much needed finish for this girl. The run she was going for (and landing in practice) was front 5, back 5, front 3, cab 3, ally oop, back 3, switch back 3. She is ripping slope too and should have a good showing tomorrow.
Makalya Tierney threw some of the biggest front 5s of the day in the girls division, but slipped out on both runs. Tough break, but she is boosting and riding with great style.
Hunter Wood, Mike Perle and Graduate James Haffner all rode well in practice, and James and Hunter made finals. Mike Perle's first practice run would have been a podium run if were in finals, but he too slipped out in his runs. Hunter had the eye of the tiger in finals and charged the pipe with great amplitude. By no fault of his own he slipped out on both finals runs but kept his chin up. James Haffner handled the icy walls and stomped big spins to stand on the podium in 2nd place. This has been a long time coming and James is on fire this year.
Josh Cohen landed both his qualifying runs, both runs including a frontside 720. When he adds a backside spin to the run he should be turning some heads.
Ezra Racine was crushed by the redesigned slope course as he had been killing it the day before. The change to the second jump that was made overnight threw many riders off and he was especially insulted. This did not stop him from charging his HP runs, both of which included sick backside handplants to fakie (a Kirk-pleasing trick).

Amidst all this action there was another interesting story. Quincy Korte-King snapped her board in half when she decked out on a crippler attempt. For a 90lb girl to break her board in half on the lip of the icy pipe and ride away unscathed was astounding. She was bummed, but its hard to keep a smile off this girl's face. The poor thing rode down to the base to grab her slope board for practice only to find that some dirtbag had stolen it off the rack!!! These events would dishearten me to say the least, but she took it all in stride which reinforces the respect and fondness I have developed for our Canadian shredder.