Saturday, February 19, 2011
things you don't see at a contest
Waiting. You never really see the waiting.
The past few days at Stoneham were pretty interesting. Firstly i thought the pipe was REALLY undervert. Prior to qualifications, a quickly downloaded app on my phone (while checking out the pipe) gave me the angles on the wall, which read at 75-78 degrees... the machine cuts at 84. I wasn't super stoked on it. But i knew the guys that usually pop to the flats a lot would love it, as they'd suddenly be hitting tranny perfectly and the rest of us would fight to make it back into the pipe.
Wednesday was our first day of practice and i didn't spin or grab my board once. It felt like i was skating a mini ramp so i just did ollies all practice. The second day it didn't feel much better to me. I grabbed a few times and did 2 720s.
Friday was the contest day and it was supposed to rain, which i love. I knew it would help steepen up the pipe walls a little. So that plus the groomer putting a little steeper cut on the pipe definitely helped me out, but still wasn't really loving it. But after traveling out here, missing some good snow in whistler, i had to pull it together and make something out of the trip.
Our day started off mildly late since it was a evening final. practice at 2pm, quals started at 3pm. It was rainy and foggy but we were able to ride no problem. I was the first rider to drop and landed a decent run in the fog that i thought would get me through to finals. After 10 guys had their runs, the fog had different ideas for the contest. We couldn't see past the first hit. So we waited at the top of the pipe hoping for it to clear. Then they tried to judge via the TV cameras that were on site. The judges still couldn't see. So the decision was made to postpone for 30 more minutes. then 30 more minutes. then 30 more minutes. We ended up waiting 2 hours before getting back to the pipe. 15 minutes of practice and right back to were we left off. But now under the lights and the rain had stopped. With everyone being able to see better than earlier i started to think my score wouldn't hold. Thankfully it did, and i landed a slightly better run my second try to make sure.
We ran through quals with no further fog problems and headed into the girls rounds. So the guys that made finals had another 2 hours to wait while the girls rode.
After having gone through several start/stops yesterday, and with the pipe not quite to my liking, i was having trouble psyching myself up for the finals. But I guess experience counts for something in contests and i just buckled down and convinced myself otherwise.
My first run in finals i dropped in too low and my first hit was right where everyone was landing theirs (the hit i was hitting was lower than everyone else to start off with). oops. almost gave up right there but experience kicked in again and I managed to put a run together though. But was really bummed on missing my first hit. Second run went better, but several mistakes kept my score lower then what i was aiming for. However i ended up 6th for the comp right behind my good friend brad martin. With not really liking the pipe, i was pretty happy with the result. Was also a good confidence boost in my ability to make runs happen. The top 4 spots were taken by japanese riders with ryo aono taking the win. Congrats to everyone for the super shredding.
A bright spot every year to being in stoneham is the crowd. they're awesome! I've been doing contests here for a decade or so and the crowd is always amazing. they get into it so much. Big thanks to everyone that makes it out every year to the event here in stoneham to cheer us on. The riders love you.
and speaking of cheering people on, I'm going to go cheer on my friends in the big air contest.
Next stop Calgary world cup later this week.