A Chilling Vision of Things to Come

Shouts to Ross Powers, Kenny Brocklestein and Hewlett-Packard

There are days when a dude can do two switch 360 flips in the same line and it comes off all inspired, like there’s still little chunks of zany magic to be scraped from the cracked maple veneers of this earthly life. And then you got days when the Olympics seem like an exhausting inevitability that will transform each session into a practice and once-dirtbag kids into future competitors for the glory of succulent Olympic gold. Because, you can’t eat just one.

Anyway, for those of you that caught this NY Times article on Shaun White’s non-skating Olympic training regimen, today was of the second type. Behold, and imagine a future 10 years from now by swapping out the term snowboarding for skateboarding:

With a deep and talented field, qualifying for the four spots on the United States men’s halfpipe team will be highly competitive. To help riders prepare this summer, the United States Ski and Snowboard Association helped finance construction of a 22-foot-tall halfpipe that meets Olympic specifications at the High Cascade Snowboard Camp on Palmer glacier at Mount Hood in Oregon. White was among several top professionals who spent time training there this month.

This part brings to mind the dudes fortunate enough to have their own multi-hundred-thousand-dollar megaramps, and the golf carts with which to properly traverse their length:

Last winter, Red Bull, one of White’s sponsors, built a private halfpipe at Silverton Mountain, a spartan resort in Colorado known for its extreme terrain. Rumors and images circulated on the Internet of White’s secret spot, with a giant air bag at the bottom of the halfpipe for soft landings while practicing tricks. His fellow professionals Keir Dillon and Heikki Sorsa joined White, but little was known about their sessions. In a sport in which top riders were accustomed to training together, a private halfpipe marked a departure from past practice. White’s rivals took note.

In June, Nike built Pearce a private halfpipe at Mammoth Mountain in California, which he rode for two weeks with his fellow United States Olympic hopefuls Danny Davis and the brothers Luke and Jack Mitrani. When asked which tricks he was working on, Pearce was circumspect.

“That’s the whole idea behind a private halfpipe, kind of keep it a bit quiet, not let everybody else know,” he said. “So once the season’s under way, it’s pretty much a surprise.”

Also, this:

He did not directly address questions about whether he would return to skateboarding next summer.

“Snowboarding has always been my main sport from the beginning,” he said. “I was just lucky enough to have my snowboarding skills cross over to skateboarding.”

Will the skateboard industry survive this global recession without help from the Flying Tomato, the most recognizable personality in action sports? Spoiler alert, the answer is no. For those of you struggling to process this news, several concerned parties plan to get reincarnated as grackles and deposit droppings on Shaun White’s Lambo as a form of avian vengeance from beyond the grave. Login “grackle”, password “gracklezrule2005”

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12 Responses to “A Chilling Vision of Things to Come”

  1. jonathan Says:

    Once again, love the simpsons references. All hail our new overlords.

  2. theProgram Says:

    espn8 – the ocho. so good my friend.

  3. Rocuronium Says:

    In the Maloof broadcast Sheckler (or was it Prod) reported that he had “a great off-season”.

  4. jeremey Says:

    the end is nigh

  5. clew Says:

    “Snowboarding has always been my main sport…”, what an embarassment. Those “Lambo” pics are fucking surreal, way to go tomate…

  6. shvitz Says:

    “the end is nigh”

    I can’t wait…then we can get back to, y’know, skating.

  7. Rocuronium Says:

    Gives additional respectability to both Cardiel and DWay for not selling out to their professional snowboarding career during the early 90s. Their massive ballsiness would have surely helped that sport progress and they’d still be leading it bigtime.

    Snowboarding is fun, though..

  8. tomtom Says:

    hm, not selling out or not keeping up… Cards was hardly the best snowboarder out there, neither was Way. What they’ve done on skate can’t be compared to their snowboarding. They’re both two of the sickest skaters out there but their pro snowboarding career’s had more to do with them being sick skaters than sick snowboarders.

    You can hate or love the tomato but it’s still refreshing to see a guy on the vert platform under 30.

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