Interview by Jeff Schmuck
Photos by Jeff Schmuck & Jean-Yves Gauthier
So first off, just what have you been up to lately? How was your winter?
My winter was pretty different than an average winter. I didn’t do a lot of ski stuff at all. The only thing I did ski related was assemble Poor Boyz’ digital video library for a couple of months, and I’m still working on that. I went through pretty much every shot Johnny ever shot from about 1995 to 2006 on Mini DV tapes. And my other ski world venture this year was I made an edit with Corey Vanular and Mickael Deschenaux for Jiberish.
Yeah that’s going to be dropping soon right?
That’s the rumor. They haven’t really told me when they’re releasing it or how they’re releasing it. They just had me do it and I got it to em.
Nice. What’s the end goal of your project with Johnny and Poor Boyz?
Well my whole reason for suggesting to Johnny that I do it is because he pretty much has the whole sport documented since day one, even before there were twin tips and the whole revolution of the sport and all that. So my theory was that having all these shots is really the behind the scenes of the sport, and if I can assemble all of this then it can go towards making any sort of documentary on the history of the sport, because there’s all this footage that has been caught on Mini DV tapes that never made it to a 16mm film. So the overall goal is to make sure history is not lost, because I feel the hardest part about skiing is that our history gets forgotten about pretty quick.
I hear that. And speaking of skiing-related things, you’ve got a really cool project on the go this summer with Phil Belanger. Tell everyone about it.
Yeah I’ve been working with Phil now for about 12 years making movies, helping at camps up at Mount Hood, and basically doing anything we can together. And our next step in life is to run a water ramp camp out of Le Relais in Quebec City. We want something new that will help the sport progress safely at a high level.
Le Relais water ramps
When it’s kick off?
We’re going to run three sessions this summer, and the first starts on the 26th of July and we go straight through till August 15th.
What are some of the highlights of the camp?
I think the biggest thing we have to offer is related to the fact that in the next step of our sport, you can’t really spin to win, which is kind of an old saying now, because now it’s almost that you have to flip to win. And because of that I feel like we’re seeing a smaller number of participants every year within in the big air category. So if we can help more kids to ski at that level safely, then we can bring more kids into the sport. So the overall goal of the camp is to open a training facility that’s safe for the kids to train right beside the big name athletes who are training for the upcoming season. Because that way they can actually sees what goes into being the best, and ski right beside them and learn from them, whether it be on the ramps or the trampolines. So that’s the big thing we offer, is the chance to be right along side these people who put in an amazing amount of work ethic to get where they’re at in the sport.
Will you guys have accommodation and meals and the whole deal like the camps in Whistler and Hood?
Yeah we’ve got full week camps along with day camps. We’re going to have lodging and we’ll take care of meals and transportation and everything, and the kids will actually be staying with the guest coaches. So we’re going to intertwine and interfuse these kids with these guys who are training for the upcoming season so they can see how they eat, how they sleep and how they train. It’s an experience unlike the on-snow camps where a lot of guys are there partying or training for themselves, and since the numbers will be so much lower as far as coaches to campers go it’ll be a whole lot better.
Phil Belanger & Felix Rioux
Alexis Godbout & JF Houle
Who will be coaching?
Coaching-wise it’s Phil Belanger and myself as the camp directors, and our head coaches who will be there all season are Chris Turpin and JF Houle, and then we’re going to have guest coaches for each week. The first week will be Tanner Hall, Henrik Harlaut and Corey Vanular, the second week will be Tom Wallisch, Henrik and Corey, and the final week will be Charles Gagnier, Kaya Turski and possibly Phil Casabon.
This sounds like it’s going to be really sick.
Yeah I think it’s going to good for the guest coaches just as much as the campers because it will get them out of the whole Olympic training vibe of the water ramps at Park City or Lake Placid. It’s going to be a fun atmosphere that’s reflective of the sport we’re doing as opposed to people yelling at them and everyone not talking to eachother.
Anything else you’d like to add about it?
I think a big reason that camps like this are so important is because when you see people like RCR (Resorts of the Canadian Rockies) eliminating jumps, and you look at the whole picture and the history of when hot dogging ended and moguls and aerials and ski ballet began, it was because of insurance reasons. So if we can be ahead of the curve and train enough kids so it’s safer for the resorts because the kids are more experienced via training on water ramps, then hopefully we can slow down the closing of these jumps all over North America so it’s not just ride on rails everywhere. So that’s a big reason why we wanted to start this camp, because we kind of see what might be coming full circle based on the history of the sport, and we want to be ahead of that so big air doesn’t become some elitist program almost like aerials. We’d like for anyone to have a chance to go out and win a big air comp.
Nice. Well lastly Iberg, despite the fact that it’s off topic, I have to ask you this question being the legendary filmmaker that you are…what movie are you most looking forward to this fall?
You know what, I’m not even stoked on movies anymore. I love the edits. If someone can come up with something like what Symms and Colby did, and make something that’s going to just come out and entertain, then that’s what gets me stoked. I’m pretty much over watching individual sponsor segments strung together in high quality for an hour. And that’s what I made, so I’m not going to put it down, but at the same time I’d rather go on Newschoolers and watch Traveling Circus or My Friend is a Pro.
Do you think you’ll make a movie again?
(laughs) Never say never.
for more information on the D-Splash water ramp camp including pricing, registration and everything else you need to know, head on over to http://www.d-structureqc.com