Mad Dog resort bloggers' thoughts on the Winter Olympics
Posted by AlanHayes 29th January 2010
What does the Winter Olympics mean to you?
The Mad Dog bloggers and other assorted friends tell us whether they’re on the edge of their seat, or hiding somewhere out in the backcountry, while the Winter Olympics are on
Donnie Macleod, founding director of Synergy Snowsports and Mad Dog blogger in Davos
“The Olympics mean we get to see winter sports on the TV without having to search and pay for it! Ones most of us didn't even know existed! We also get to see just how extreme skiing and snowboard can get. The competition brings together the best winter athletes in the world and showcases them in such a way that only the Olympics can.
There are plenty of opportunities to see some of these guys and gals in action throughout the year but the Olympics makes it far more accessible and given the nationalistic nature of the competing it gets you engaged and supporting people doing events that you may know nothing about. The excitement of it all makes up for any lack of understanding!
Furthermore, how often do you get to see someone slide on their chest, 8mm from concrete and ice, head-first at speeds of a hundred miles an hour? Daft? Yes. Entertaining? Absolutely! Don't miss it.”
Ruth Martin, Mad Dog blogger in Chamonix
“To me the Winter Olympics means Annecy 2018 and the sudden realisation that there might be an Olympics on my doorstep. Amazingly there’s only a murmuring of interest at the moment within the snowy bubble of Argentiere, apart from the French curling team who frequent one of the bars here. I hope I can get tickets to the girls' ski and snowboarding freestyle events. I'm a big fan of Jenny Jones and Torah Bright.”
Eric Kendall of www.skizinal.com
"Here in Zinal, Switzerland, we've had a very amusing bunch of clients staying in our chalet who are quite unreasonably good skiers, so I have been hooning round all the spots normally reserved for us, and getting major points for finding untracked powder weeks after the last real snowfall. The Winter Olympics though? I'm not remotely interested – skiing is not about competition for me."
Patrick Thorne of skiinfo.co.uk says he’s looking forward to watching the Olympics.
“I’m excited about the Ghanaian chap, Kwame. I’ve been watching out for him for six years, and I’m delighted he’s got there. I also follow biathlon closely, so I’ll be watching that, and I went on a trip to Whistler to see them building the facilities, and got to lie where the biathletes lie.”
[Wanna know more about the ‘Ghanaian chap’? Check out this BBC link to see Kwame Nkrumah-Acheampong, the single member of Ghana’s first ever Winter Olympics team, talking about how he’s got his eye on some of the smaller competing nations, and is “gearing up to try to thrash them”.]
Duncan Smith, chalet chef and Mad Dog blogger in St Anton, Austria
“Regarding the Winter Olympics, they have only slightly more interest for me than the regular Olympics. If they are on TV and in the media significantly I wouldn't turn away. I don't know any of the competitors. I suppose it is important to focus attention on winter sports and to allow producers of snowsport equipment to brand and promote based on the best athletes in the world, but as a snowboarder who likes backcountry it’s not an area of snowsports I am interested in. I guess the XGames would be more my cup of tea.”
Naeem Alvi, Mad Dog blogger in Serre Chevalier, France
“In my opinion, the Winter Olympics has grown to share equal status and spectacle as its summer counterpart. The recognition of winter sports on a global scale is a driving force behind its growth, and the growth of each sport’s competitors. I look forward to watching it on TV every year, mainly to see just how much each sport has progressed. For Great Britain especially, it is always inspiring to see a home victory from a country that really doesn’t have any guaranteed snowfall. Bring it on!”
Dan Scott, Mad Dog blogger in Zermatt
“Well, it definitely gets me more amped than watching the 1500-metres in the athletics, that’s for sure. I’m so happy to see that winter sports are still on the up and I think a big reason for that is the ever growing freestyle scene in our sport.
Which is kind of why I find it pretty hard to understand why the governing federations and bodies haven’t clocked onto the fact that we should be seeing the ski slopestyle discipline in there too! I mean, if we can have the halfpipe in there with all the park skiers and snowboarders strutting their stuff, why not show the world all the other obstacles they can impress on as well?
I’m so happy to witness the huge boom that’s going on in the indoor scene in Britain and I look forward to seeing all the grassroots grow up and give us an awesome team in the future. Good luck to UK and I’ll be watching every chance I get...”
Olly Nixon, Mad Dog blogger in Whistler Blackcomb Ski School
“I would say there is mixed feelings about the games in Whistler. Some people are benefitting, some are not. For some everyday life will change slightly, and for others it will be quite testing having the Winter Olympics here.
Whilst I am looking forward to the games and the entertainment it brings I believe my personal situation may suffer due to low numbers of guests in resort to ski!
I hope I’m proved wrong and it’s a great experience. I’ll let you know!”
[Olly’s been blogging for us through the Times Online!
Ben Simpson, Mad Dog blogger in Tignes
“My major thought on the Winter Olympics is that I'm gutted I didn't make the effort to go when it was in Turin! Great news that skiercross is included, I think it's important to identify with the younger end of the market with some 'cooler' disciplines. Any massive events such as the Winter Olympics are great as it gets everyone motivated to get out to resort to have a go themselves.”
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