Where’s your favourite place to shred?
Whistler/Blackcomb. It’s my backyard and the best place I’ve found so far!
Who inspires you?
Every day different people inspire me. It could be kids having fun, someone smiling, or a friend pushing their limits. It’s easy to find inspiration in so many places.
What has snowboarding taught you?
Snowboarding has taught me the importance of an extended family. I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many great people along the way who are friends I consider family now. That really came out at the Halfpipe Fam Jam this year.
What’s your favorite part about competing?
I like a good challenge. With competing you have to be able to perform at that moment, it’s all consuming, you’re so focused on the task at hand, you’re in the zone, I think that’s the best part for me, being in the zone and pushing my limits.
Fill in this statement: I snowboard because…
It lets me feel free, it allows me to share amazing moments with friends, it challenges me, it scares me, it warms my heart and it gives me the biggest smile.
How did you get into snowboarding?
I was a skier and figure skater growing up, skiing got boring and I wanted to try something new. Figure skating got way too competitive and I was losing friendships over it, so naturally I turned to snowboarding and never looked back. It’s funny that I started competing in snowboarding but it was a totally different lifestyle from competitive figure skating, I was riding with my friends and that’s what it’s about.
What’s the best contest you have ever been to?
Most people would assume the Olympics in Vancouver would be the best contest I’ve even been to and it’s one of the top ones, but I think Euro X Games 2010 is the most memorable for me it was the first contest I landed a backside 9 and I ended up 4th.
When did you decide to give up school or a job to ride full time?
My parents always said ‘you won’t be able to snowboard forever so do it while you can’. I remember the first time I won a pro contest that had the big check, I was able to pay them back for all the trips they had paid for. I’ve never looked back and am happy to say that snowboarding will always be part of my life and I have made a living out of it. It’s a lifestyle there’s no taking that away.
What do your parents think about your career?
My parents allowed me to peruse my passion at a young age, traveling to contests at the age of 13 while my dad hid in the bushes to watch. I’m lucky to have had a discussion with my dad the other day after my recovery from a concussion suffered at the 2014 Sochi Games. He told me that they both (mum and dad) support my decision with what I choose to do when it comes to snowboarding. I couldn’t ask for better parents, they have had to watch me recover from my worst injury to date, learning how to walk and talk again, and still they support my decision to compete again. I’m proud of them for having to watch me do an extreme sport and I know they are proud of all my accomplishments, but you’d have to ask them for more details 😉
Where would you hold a contest that doesn’t already have one?
Dubai, mainly cause I want to go there. It’s not often we go to tropical climates for snowboarding, we simply just chase winter and snow.
What is the greatest snowboard trip you’ve done and why?
Oh my gosh, I’ve been traveling, thanks to snowboarding, for at least 18 years and there are so many good memories and so many friends. To dwindle it down to one trip would be impossible, traveling with my teammates is what makes all my trips great. It was always fun going to World Cups and World Championship events that athletes from all disciplines were at. We all stayed in the same hotel, it was the whole competitive snowboard world together. We cheered each other on and when the contests and races were over we all celebrated together. The Olympics are different, you hang out with other athletes from your Country rather than the snowboard community, still cool, just completely different than being on the snowboard tour, as it should be it’s the OLYMPICS!
Is there any place in the world you have not yet been snowboarding but have always wanted to?
I’ve yet to go to Alaska or Dubai.
What’s your best travel tip?
Pack earplugs, a facemask and your pillow, you never know where you might end up sleeping…And you never know what kind of pillow you’re gunna get. I remember my first time traveling to Chile and the pillows there were like bricks. After that trip I bring my own pillow on all my trips.
Funny travel story:
I have a lot of blonde moments. My teammates would know the best stories.
Which place had the best/weirdest food?
Best food is home. Whistler has some of the best food, really it’s so diverse sushi, Italian, French, Mexican, well now I’m hungry!
Weirdest food was Korea. I remember this bowl with red sauce and what looked like octopus and fish with strange brown bits in it..needless to say it did not look appetizing and no I didn’t try it!
How do you follow your nutrition plan on the road?
I tend to bring a lot of food with me when I travel, having breakfast and lunch and snacks in my bags makes it a lot easier to eat while on the road. It’s not always easy finding healthy choices on the road and having a sensitive stomach I have to be prepared.
What music do you have on your playlist?
Top 40, yup I’m into Pink, Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez and so many more, go ahead judge me you know you like it too!
If there was one song to introduce you as your theme song, what would it be?
My song right now is Fight Song by Rachel Platten because I fought and believed in myself to get back snowboarding again.
When not riding, I’m:
Biking, running, tweeting, swimming, yogaing, really just being active. I have a hard time sitting still. Oh and you’ll find me laughing with friends and family.
What is the best piece of advice you have been given?
I like to share #MercedesMotivationalMonday on twitter with great motivational quotes every Monday, but the last piece of advice I was given that really stuck with me was from coach Josh Duncan. He said, ‘Don’t forget to celebrate the small goals’ it’s always easy to focus on the big goal that we often forget to celebrate the small goals that are integral in achieving the big goal.
Other than snowboarding, do you have a favourite sport?
No fav, but I do love sports, always open for a good day outside biking, swimming, tennis to name a few.