Top Five Fridays - April 1, 2016 // Ski Industry News
#1: New Kickstarter Product Wants to Automate Your Ski Coaching:
Well, I think we all saw this coming. As we push further into the digital age, it was only a matter of time before someone invented an automated ski aid that will help track your performance and give you pointers. Introducing the Carv, “The World’s First Wearable That Helps You Ski Better.” It looks like we’re a bit late to the party, but yesterday on Kickstarter this new device became successfully funded. So what is it exactly? Well, it’s a slim footbed insert full of sensors that collects real time data as you ski. It uses pressure and geo tracking to record information such as speed, distance, and air time. Not only that, and this is what makes it really different, but it can figure out things like where your body weight is during a carve, and using it’s bluetooth audio system, give you in the moment comments such as, “lean forward.” For skiers looking to perfect their craft, it could end up being a pretty valuable bit of training equipment though. There is one glaring area of concern for us free skiers though: the device also touts its ability to critique and improve your skiing in the park. While this might be good for learning fundamentals, it’s an unfortunate and scary thought to think that this device is going to tell you whether or not you’re doing your tricks “perfectly” as a huge part of the sport is reliant on individual style. Still, for those looking to “perfect” a new trick, the Carv could come in handy. You can view their Kickstarter campaign here, and keep an eye on their website for pre-ordering information.
#2: Assault Charges Against Picabo Street Dropped:
This story’s no fun for anyone, but it’s certainly of interest who anyone who knows the name Picabo Street. As you may or may not know, Picabo Street was arrested back in December on charges of assaulting her elderly father. At the time, not much was known about the situation but a less than flattering mug shot made its way around the internet regardless. Now, about 3 months later, prosecutors in the case have decided to drop the charges as there’s been a severe lack of evidence against Picabo. In fact, as the actual story comes to light, it appears as though the responding officers totally misread the situation. On the night of the altercation, it was in fact Picabo’s father who had become disorderly and a threat to the family, and not Picabo herself. This resulted in Picabo locking him in the basement while she called police for help. You can read more about the situation over on the USA Today website if you’re interested. Besides that, keep in mind that there are usually two sides to a story and a person isn’t necessarily guilty simply because the media says they are. We wish Picabo Street the best moving forward.
#3: Ivan Origone Breaks World Speed Skiing Record:
How do you become the world’s fastest man on skis? Well, you find a steep, perfectly groomed slope, don a slick red vinyl speed suit, find a fancy aerodynamic helmet, and some crazy boot covers. How do we know all of this? Well, we just watched a video of Ivan Origone doing just that in a video published on March 26th. In the video, you see Origone assuming the position at the top of a steep, straight run, and simply tucking until he hits his top speed of 254.958 kilometers per hour, or 158.424 miles per hour. We don’t mean to downplay the accomplishment- going this fast on skis is a hell of a feat. I mean, heck, most of us probably never have and never will go that fast in a car. Speaking of which, as the video points out, Origone’s acceleration was faster than that of a Formula 1 car. In accomplishing the highest speed ever recorded on skis, Origone accelerated to 250 kmh in just 5.5 seconds. Oh, and by the way. The record that Origone broke? It was his own.
#4: Relatively New South Western Mountain Collective to Get Additional $10 Million in Upgrades:
Over the last few seasons, there’s been some strong, yet quiet developments amongst a collection of ski resorts in the South West United States. Since the 2014 season, James H. Coleman, Jr. has purchased a number of resorts, giving him ownership of four South West resorts: Purgatory Resort in Durango, CO, Snowbowl, AZ, Sipapu Ski & Summer Resort, NM, and Pajarito Mountain in New Mexico. While it’s still a small collection compared to the holdings of mega companies like Intrawest or Vail Resorts, Coleman has made it evident that he means serious business with his mini-empire. After spending $10 million on improvements at the resorts last year, it’s recently been announced that another $10 million will be invested for the 2016-2017 ski season. Amongst the improvements will be new lifts, new trails, and new snowmaking upgrades. If you’re living in the South West and somehow still haven’t heard this news, be sure to check out the Power Pass which gives you unlimited skiing at these resorts, plus three free lift tickets to a number of others. To see a full list of improvements, check out the Purgatory Resort website.