Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Freeskiing [Print without images]

Thursday, May 10, 2012
Spring training


Top ski and snowboard athletes are already preparing for next contest season. Launch gallery »

The U.S. Freeskiing and Snowboarding teams have been at Mammoth Mountain, Calif., this week for a spring training camp at one of the few ski areas still left open for the winter season. Both halfpipe and slopestyle skiers and snowboarders have been sessioning Mammoth's park, pipe and airbag with coaches to get a jumpstart on tricks for next winter's contest season. The first events of the 2012-13 season start this summer in New Zealand, where FIS World Cup ski and snowboard events at New Zealand's Cardrona Alpine Resort in August will serve as some of the first qualifying events for the 2014 Winter Olympics Games in Sochi, Russia.

"After a long season of competition it's so nice to be out here in Mammoth just hitting perfect jumps," says skier Tom Wallisch. "This season couldn't have gone any better for me and I am stoked to have some chill training time just riding spring conditions and working on tricks."

Adds snowboarder Kelly Clark, "There is a three hit pipe with the end cut off where we can drag the airbag from the front side wall to the backside wall every other day. There is a lot of progression going down, and we are going to see great things come out of this camp.