Mammoth. FINALS. WIND boarding + A TOP 5 at the World Cup.

Mammoth. FINALS. WIND boarding + A TOP 5 at the World Cup.

Mammoth Mtn US Grand Prix.

Straight from Italy, we jetted to LA.. BABY! Yes it was 70 degrees, and we woke up in the mecca that is Venice Beach, ate buckwheat pancakes, drank Almond Lattes in a classic LA Vegan hippy joint… ON POINT. haha. As much as I would have loved to stay at the beach in the sunshine there was a mission to be had. We set off first thing on our 6 hour road trip up to the Sierra Nevada Mountain range.

Pancakes LA style.

Pancakes LA style.

Shop fronts.

Shop fronts.

Mammoth Mountain, it’s one of those that when it’s good, there isn’t anywhere better. Blue sky and that California sunshine. Day 1 + 2 of practice were premium. Mid Winter, end of Jan and it’s +8 on the mountain, with the deepest base of snow Mammoth has seen in over 25 years.

Driving into Mammoth town itself was insane, the whole town practically buried under 10 foot of snow. You literally couldn’t even find your way around the town as every entrance to each store, petrol station, or restaurant was covered or buried under snow banks! I don’t think I have ever been anywhere and seen so much snow! 

MAMMOTH. Yes my room is buried under this pile of snow.

MAMMOTH. Yes my room is buried under this pile of snow.

So the practice was good, however due to the new monthly record amount of snowfall, 246 inches since Jan 1st. The Gondola was so close to the jumps they had to close it because of incoming snowboarders reaching heights too close. 

When the jumps to close to the Gondola! 

When the jumps to close to the Gondola! 

The quals, wasn’t so hot, with high winds and intermittent wind gusts howling down the course it was a little sketchy, after practice the winds dropped a little and the contest kick-started. I landed my first run with a little blip on the first rail, so it was time to clean things up for the 2nd run. I landed my run, taking a score of 79.00 which put me through 3rd in my heat behind Jamie Anderson and Julia Marino. 

Qualifying in 3rd through to the finals.

Qualifying in 3rd through to the finals.

With wind gusts reaching 100MPH at the peak on Friday, Finals day was cancelled and postponed untill Saturday. Saturday was the same deal, we headed up the mountain, with more wind, more snow, it kept getting pushed back and back, which meant Saturday was a write-off.  With the event on the verge of being cancelled they decided to give it one last shot. 

SUNDAY - it was game day, with a little less wind, and some flat light, the comp was all go. Practice kicked off at 8AM, with 30 minutes of training we dropped in at 8.45. Despite the conditions the girls killed it,  was really happy to walk away with another Top 5 Final result, which puts me in great stead for the Olympic Qualifying process. 

Taking home top 5 at the US Grand Prix! :D

Taking home top 5 at the US Grand Prix! :D

ROAD trip, back down to LA in the Jeep. Thanks to GB Park and Pipe and Hertz for looking after us on the road!

ROAD trip, back down to LA in the Jeep. Thanks to GB Park and Pipe and Hertz for looking after us on the road!

On the road again!

Next stop is Canada. Right now I am sat in the back of the Jeep jetting towards LAX airport. Monday we fly on the next stop on the tour. Quebec City for the FIS World Cup Big Air and Slopestyle event. I’ve never done 2 events in one week, it’s going to be heavy! Bring it on :)

AUSTRIA. SWITZERLAND. ITALY (World Cup Finals)

AUSTRIA. SWITZERLAND. ITALY (World Cup Finals)

The last month has been a little rocky, rolling my ankle the day before New Years Eve…I was meant to fly out to Absolut Park in Austria for some training before the Russian World Cup Big Air event. I had to cancel Austria… and Russia :(  A casual “hike” at home turned into 2 weeks off my snowboard rehabbing a grade 2 Lateral Ligament ankle sprain… far from Ideal! However, it happens and you can’t wrap yourself in cotton wool! Ha.

sprained ankle

 

So the ankle has been a bit of a pain to be honest, I didn’t want to leak any intel about it until I knew the full extent of how long it would take to heal, my physio back in Belfast gave me the great news of 2-4 weeks! “REALLY it would be 4”!  Two weeks into the injury I decided I would try and ride the first Slopestyle World Cup of the season. My foot was still very tender from the sprain which meant I couldn’t train at all. A weak pressure point on the bone, meant even when the physio tapped my ankle and compressed the tape I burst into tears. For the qualification day we managed to get a good grip on it, with a strong dose of pain killers and a solid tape job it allowed me to push through and put a safe run on the board to score some valuable FIS points for the Olympic qualification process. 

The next mission… LAAX, Switzerland. 1 week later… it was the same scenario, with a demanding course, and no practice it was tough out there. I suprised myself and rode strong and confidently all things considered with zero practice until 45 minutes until the contest, which meant 5 runs through the course! It was intense and the pressure was on, this time the lack of practice didn’t put me in good stead for the contest, falling on the last feature in both my runs meant I did not progress to the semi-finals. 

With no further riding to be done in LAAX, it was a blessing in disguise as it gave me 6 days before the next contest to recharge the body and focus on recovery. With some pool rehab in Switzerland, time on the bike each day, single leg balancing work and at the physio every day my foot was in good hands.

Alison on it. Tape + Deep Heat. We are a GO! 

Alison on it. Tape + Deep Heat. We are a GO! 

Next stop on the whirlwind Slopestyle tour was South Tyrol in Italy. Feeling stronger and in a lot less pain than the previous contests it was finally go time. With my foot still casted up in a tape like boot, I had 2 great days of practice. Blue-bird skies, a great course, I was on good form. Qualification went off,  with a strong field of 37+ girls. I managed to stick down both of my quali runs, improving my 2nd run with my Back Rodeo, I was really happy to qualify 2nd in my heat direct to finals.

Qualified in 2nd.

Put your HANDS up in the air! Happy to Qualify in 2nd :) 

Floating in Italy!

Finals day was Friday, with blue bird skies, 4 Brits in the finals, 3 of the Men on the GB Team, Billy Morgan, Jamie Nicholls, Rowan Coultas and myself representing for the ladies we had a strong squad. I landed my first run placing me 5th overall. So chuffed after a rough few weeks managing my foot I couldn’t be happier to put down a run and get my first result of the 2017 in the bag. Big shout out to the ladies on the podium for throwing down, Sina Canadian with the Front 10, and Enni Rukjarvi fresh off her win from the LAAX Open, taking her 2nd Win of the Season. Also congrats to my good friend Mr Jamie Nicholls for brining home 2nd place. TEAM GB! YEAH ! 

gb squad

Really chuffed to be back on it,  however, that’s just the warm up ;) bring on the next one. The whirlwind continues! I have a few exciting things in the pipeline which I can’t wait to tell you! FOR NOW it's a long drive from Italy, through Austria, into Germany. A Flight to London, a 3 hour layover, another flight to LA, and then a 6 hour drive to Mammoth. I will be competing in the US World Cup Grand Prix! 


Stay tuned. 

 

Aimz

 

WHIRLWIND tour!!! KOREA. GERMANY. USA.

WHIRLWIND tour!!! KOREA. GERMANY. USA.

 It’s crazy since the Milano World Cup we have been on the go non stop! on the whirl wind, which is the Olympic qualifying tour. From Milan I headed back to Stubai in the Tirol to get some more quality time on snow, before the next mission to Korea.

The Olympic test event Venue! KOREA.

I flew back to the UK and had one weekend on UK turf, there’s nothing better than getting back on the runway at LHR to the sweet smell of moist air and drizzle! haha. No seriously though… I love it. It’s HOME :) From London we flew to Seoul for the first Olympic Big Air test event of this season in Pyeong Chang the home of the 2018 Winter Games.

It was my 2nd time visiting Korea, with the Slopestyle event in Phoenix park it was mega to visit the new venue Big Air. I’ve never seen a Big Air with a scaffolding in run, into a real snow platform landing. With next to no snow in the local area it was phenomenal to see the mound of snow they had created in the stadium. It was surreal competing there, knowing that hopefully in a year and 3 months we would be back there competing in the Olympics.

3 hours from Seoul City. It’s a cool spot, and Seoul itself is mega, deffinatley worth a check.

I had a bit of a rough week with little practice, having carried a small injury over on my hip, it left me for 1 training day before the comp. However with sketchy conditions maybe it was a blessing in disguise. The jump was perfect shape, and BIG! however the man made snow made the conditions pretty hit or miss! ICY, SLUSHY and a little windy. I managed to put down my first run, not as clean or as big as I wanted to go, which put me in the top 12 in a strong field. I have to say I wasn’t happy with my riding, but it just makes me hungrier!!! 

The ice Wedge!

Straight from Seoul it was into Germany for the 3rd Big Air of the season.... Another top 10 in the bag! An amazing crowd and some good riding, Germany was a good one! This moved me into the TOP 5 in the overall FIS World Rankings, currently sitting in 4th in the Big Air :) 

Blue skies in Germany! 

Blue skies in Germany! 

All smiles in Germany! 

All smiles in Germany! 

From Germany we flew straight to the USA for 2.5 weeks before Christmas. I am stoked to have had the opportunity to partner up with Rhino Car hire for the first week, so I got to drive this beast of a JEEP in the snow. Actually I have never seen so much snow accumulate in Colorado. So it was a good thing to have snow tyres and 4WD! I spent 4 of the 7 days digging out the car! CRAZY :D  Staying in Frisco, a small mountain town just 10 miles from Breckenridge, we had access to ride 3 resorts, with our time split between Keystone, Copper and Breckenridge,  a few Woodward sessions it was a good mission.

7AM. READY FOR PRACTICE! In the Jeep.

7AM. READY FOR PRACTICE! In the Jeep.

y Mum made it out to Colorado! It was so cool to have her along and share a typical week in the life, she got to eat sleep and breathe what I do, from the riding, to the gym and swim sessions straight off the mountain! 

OUR SWEET RIDE!
Here's a snap shot of me in Action from Dew Tour! 

Here's a snap shot of me in Action from Dew Tour! 

OPE everyone had a LOVELY Christmas and New Years. I will be writing a few blogs on WHAT I Pack for a snowboard trip! And a blog post on WHAT I EAT when training!?? what do you think???

Really excited to get back on snow ASAP and share my next Journey with you! 

For now. My latest news! We raised over £2000 for Cancer Research UK over the Christmas period for my Roxy Snowboard Auction. Congrats to the winner, picked at random. Kirsty Sweeney! I am posting your newly signed snowboard today. Together we all made a difference. You can still donate! BUT FOR NOW, congrats and well done to all. BIG LOVE

imee.

WORLD CUP Big AIR MILAN. 4th place :D

WORLD CUP Big AIR MILAN. 4th place :D

World Cup MILANO.

It was quite the contrast going from the top of the Stubbier glacier in the Tirol to MILAN a global capital of the FASHION and design world. Never mind the fact that it's a major financial hub, and has amazing shopping and restaurants…. and yes, we were there to snowboard…in the City! Wednesday morning was spent snowboarding at 3210M, and by Wednesday evening we had registered for the first official Olympic Qualifying event and World Cup of the season. 

I have never competed in an Inner City Big Air so I was excited, yet a little nervous on how to deal with the gigantic tower of scaffolding ahead of me. Thursday morning we headed to the site of the jump, checked it out, registered and prepped the boards for night practice.

Me + Silje. Checking the jump! 

Me + Silje. Checking the jump! 

We had an hour on the jump which worked out about 9 jumps. It’s crazy just dropping into something cold, no cruise down the piste to warm up, you're straight in off the press into a rapid ice shoot and off the kicker.

Team GB Squad. Jamie Nicholls, Billy Morgan, Rowan Coultas, Katie Ormerod.

Team GB Squad. Jamie Nicholls, Billy Morgan, Rowan Coultas, Katie Ormerod.

Blue skies and plus 10 for the qualification :)

Blue skies and plus 10 for the qualification :)

Cheese. Pumped after qualifying through to the finals with a 90.00 in Qualfication.

Cheese. Pumped after qualifying through to the finals with a 90.00 in Qualfication.

Qualification went down on Saturday afternoon. I felt solid in the practice, and put down a run to score me a 90.00 and qualify me straight into the finals in 2nd place. I was buzzing. First run stomped felt good. 

Dropping into the finals.

Dropping into the finals.

Finals was all to play for, my aim was to play it safe and get 2 runs on the board. I ended up finishing 4th. My best World Cup Result so far. Big congrats to Anna Gasser for putting down the Cab Double, and shout out to Team Mate for Billy Morgan for a solid final result in the Men's.

On the big screen, in Finals. Pic - Marco Zeta

On the big screen, in Finals. Pic - Marco Zeta

Pic - Marco Zeta

Pic - Marco Zeta

Thanks to the insane ITALIAN crowd, the fans.. you rule. I left Milan a true fan!  My friends from home also ended up in Milan for the weekend, and watched all day, so a big shout out to those guys for the support and my Man RoSSO for being my support crew. 

DUOMO

Peace out Italy! I am back in Austria now, prepping for the next comp. Stay tuned. More updates from Stubai.

Shenanigans!

Shenanigans!

Just a quick update here! 

Ive been back in the UK since Australia,  between training up in Scotland with GB Park and Pipe, a trip to France with Roxy, a couple of visits back home to visit the family in N Ireland! Cycling, gym, yoga and a little on snow training in the dome! It's been good to be back in the UK preparing for the winter :)

Just thought I would share with you a few links.

LIVE with BBC Sport at the Ski show, I was given the opportunity to take the lead and show you around the show and introduce you to some of the rest of the team. 

Why I. Interview on MAD TO LIVE blog.

Why I. Interview on MAD TO LIVE blog.

I am out in Austria at the moment getting ready for the first World Cup of the season in Italy next week. Exciting. Stay tuned :)

Aimz.