Wednesday, April 28, 2010 Updated: June 14, 5:31 PM ET
Team Canada TEAM CANADASkiers: TJ Schiller, Bone Dorey, Chug Life Videographers: Michael Clarke, Darren Rayner
When every team boasted skiers who could reasonably be called the best in the world, the Jon Olsson Super Sessions video contest was bound to be won by the videographers. So bound that, even with X Games gold medalist TJ Schiller, decorated superpipe phenomenon Bone Dorey, and licensed pilot Chug Life looking amply qualified on their skis, videographers Michael Clarke and Darren Rayner are being given the lion's share of the credit for the team's recent victory.
Team Canada celebrates a big win in Åre.
"We got zeros for all the skiing," said Chug Life, referring to the event's peculiar judging format which awarded points in each category only to the top three teams. "Clarke had the best editing and filming skills. He and Darren [Rayner] won the filming and editing categories, and then we all won the overall."
Those "editing and filming skills" have been a long time in the making for Clarke, who is working on degrees in both film and photography at the University of Colorado at Boulder. The camera-toting collegian actually participated in the first incarnation of the Jon Olsson Super Sessions on the other side of the camera in 2008, as an athlete.
Clarke's 2010 ski season met with early misfortune when he ruptured his ACL skiing on a December 2009 trip to Nova Scotia. Having some familiarity with Clarke's non-skiing talents, the Canadians grasped on the opportunity to turn lemons into lemonade, and set to casting as Canadian a hue as possible onto their prospective videographer.
"The Canadian boys gave me a call before the event and asked me if I wanted to tag along," explained Clarke. "They that I counted as part Canadian because my girlfriend is from Toronto."