When you meet, Jesper Tjader he certainly doesn’t come across as a complete maniac. Quite the opposite, in fact. He’s an unassuming, softly-spoken man who clearly has no interest in being the center of attention. Which is unfortunate because, between his viral edits, questionably-judged comp outings, and uniquely bonkers way of looking at skiing, that is precisely where he often finds himself. He’s a mellow maniac if there ever was one.
Still just 28, it seems like Jesper has been around forever. It’s more than a decade since he was the wonderkid of skiing, first noticed by Jon Olsson at his home resort of Åre, Sweden. Since then he’s been to three Olympic games, filmed multiple street parts with Field Productions, smashed out world firsts, broken world records, and even, occasionally, won some medals when the judges weren’t docking points for unknown reasons.
None of it seems to have fazed Jesper himself, who continues to compete because he enjoys it and still skis exactly how he wants, day in day out. He enters this season fresh off the back of one of the most successful winters of his life. “I have really been enjoying competing lately, so I will be going to some contests this winter. Right now I feel like I will definitely go for the next Olympics,” he tells us when we chatted last week.
The competition scene has done nothing to dampen his creativity, however, and his career has been marked by a series of unique feats. Perhaps the most memorable, alongside his recent world record-breaking longest railslide, was the loop box, which he stomped in Supervention II. He still continually jots ideas for tricks and features in a series of notebooks, but the loop concept had been around even longer than those famous books of mystery.
“I had been thinking about the loop rail ever since I played SSX on my PlayStation as a kid. When I signed for Red Bull, they asked if I had any ideas for a project, and the loop rail instantly came to mind as a part of the first Unrailistic project. It didn’t happen in time for Unrailistic, but we worked on it and it finally came together with Field Productions for their movie the year after!”
Jesper is incredibly loyal to his sponsors, including Sweet Protection & Head, having worked with both for his entire career. “I’ve been with Sweet Protection since I was 16 years old. So maybe it was about time to make something special like this happen,” he tells me. And this season sees him drop a pro model collection with Sweet, featuring a Boondock Goggle, and fittingly, a Looper helmet.
It’s actually a coincidence that the helmet is named the Looper. Jesper chose the model, already part of the Sweet line, because it’s, “clean looking, lightweight and of course, it has all the safety features Sweet Protection is known for,” he explains. But given the fortuitous naming parallel, of course, they had to feature a small loop motif alongside other subtle styling details that mark both products out.
It’s fitting too because Jesper is a big proponent of helmets in general. He is one of the few pros we can think of who has always worn one, be it in the streets or in the park, even back in the early 2010s when it was rare to see helmets in the streets. Partly that’s because of his penchant for going upside down at all times and on all features, but also he sees it as “important for setting a good example to those who support us”.
Once a young gun, he is now a consummate professional. But his mind continues to travel to greater and wackier things. He has “some exciting stuff planned for this spring”, but unfortunately “can't really talk about it yet”. Other than that he plans to simply “enjoy skiing and try to learn some new tricks!” My final question… will we see him get back after it in the streets? It’s an emphatic, “Yes! I‘ve been scoping spots for the last two years, and I’ve also hit some spots just for fun. I’m just waiting for a good time to go all in for a street video!” We can’t wait.
Check out the Jesper X Sweet collection here