Ten questions to Mark Miller Thirst Snowboards
Abbiamo avuto il piacere di scoprire questo appassionato costruttore e progettista di tavole che ha risposto a dieci domande sullo snowboard
1. Name: Mark Miller, June 1965.
Profession: Snowboard designer/builder for Thirst snowboards.
Mountain: Schweitzer Mountain Resort, Sandpoint, Idaho USA.
2. Gear: Thirst snowboards, 171 FX, 173 BX, 175 7 WARP Superconductor, 184.5 8R WARP, 185 8R, 179 7X, etc. All Thirst snowboards.
Boots: UPZ RC-10 (grey and black tongues).
Bindings: Nitro plates "regular orientation" (modified, toe lift 11-13mm front foot and heel lift 23mm rear foot, no cant either foot). Stance 17.5-20"
Bole goggles, Giro fullface helmet, jackets and pants…nothing special.
3. Since when you are on hard snowboarding?:
Snowboarder since 1979, hardboots since 1994. Have been riding my own boards since '79.
4. Why hard? :
I enjoy hardbooting/alpine for the technical aspects. I feel that no one can ever reach the fullest potential. I most enjoy the sensation of caving hard full turns to feel the "G" forces, and seeing how far I can push myself in form and performance.
5. What do you think about new tecnologies:
What do I think of new technologies? I think I will keep most of this to myself, seems I offend most when I voice my opinions. If you are interested in a snowboard builder who takes a different approach to board construction and shape design visit my website www.thirstsnowboards.com and send me an email if you would like to get on one.
6. What could help the raise back of the hard snowboarding:
Making alpine boarding more popular: I feel the community need to have more chances to gather, freestyle boarding does on a weekly basis with events and competitions. I believe that more frequent demo sessions would be a good way to do this. I would urge alpine riders to give other alpine snowboard manufacturing companies opportunities with out prejudgement. Ask you local ski shop to carry alpine gear, and send potential customer to them. Invite the owners to ride with you and show them why you love the sport. Be an activist and connect with the freestyle crowd (especially those mid-lifers) they are the most likely to become alpine riders.
7. Training techniques:
I am not a racer but I push myself each and everytime I ride. I am constantly switching boards, stance widths and angles for testing, sometimes more than twice in a day. I think the most important thing is to find your "center", that perfect balancing point and work from there increasing speed and turning forces while remaining in your "center". Being able to find your center even when you may not have the perfect set-up allows you to take advantage of the riding situation and any learning experiences you may gain from it.
Try to find what a particular board has to offer you, don't place expectations on it to perform just like one you have. In riding so many different boards I have found this to be my first mistake, expecting a different board design to work just like the one I rode before.
I also try to find small snowballs or pinecones on the runs and use them as gates. I will purposely pick ones that is a more difficult line and then slice the snowball in half with my board tip while I carve my turn.
8. Advice for someone new to alpine snowboarding:
Stay away from old gear (I say that with my tongue in my cheek for my old bindings, ha ha.
I take care of them and they have never failed me and provide a very solid connection to my board with no dampening interface).
Make certain the board has a proper tune.
Try to find step-in binding to use for your first time out, nothing is more frustrating than not being able to get into your binding without constant help from others.
Or ride a crossover recreational board like a Thirst BX or FX with softboot binding and ride with biased angles.
Team up with a fellow alpine rider and have them help you "find your edge" as soon as possible.
9. Advice for the seasoned alpine rider:
Keep riding, be an ambassador for the sport. Ask resorts to promote alpine rider events. Ask rental, ski school and shops to offer alpine gear and training. Give the small guy (me) a chance, sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith and buy what they have to offer. There is no way that everyone will get to demo a board before buying.
10. Tell us something we didn't think of:
Alpine should really be the way of the snowboarder of the future. The high speed lifts are causing fresh snow to be devoured in record time. Take advantage of the most common conditions on the mountain…groomed. Look to Thirst snowboard for providing the design and construction that has not been utilized and expect more from your board in versatility, strength and performance.