|ESPN.com: Snowboarding||[Print without images]|
|Sometimes patience and hard work pays off.|
When someone as talented and likable as Jonah Owen can go for over a year without a board sponsor, you know it's a true sign of harsh economic times. Owen came up riding for Technine and filming for F.O.D.T, walked away from the SLC-based crew in search of a change, and found himself in the midst of a financial meltdown and rapidly-shrinking team budgets.
Owen stayed positive and kept ripping as hard as ever, and eventually his persistence paid off. This summer he won the Hot Dawgz and Handrails contest and just this week Rome Snowboards announced that he'll be joining the company as the newest addition to their pro team.
What's up Jonah. How are you?
I'm doing pretty well, just hanging at my house in Bend.
So are you officially the hottest of dawg on the handrails?
(Laughs) Um... I don't know. I guess so?
I heard that you were pretty surprised about winning that contest. Did you not feel like you deserved it?
I don't really think about it while I'm snowboarding. I didn't get the chance to see all the other riders because I was hiking and riding. It's hard to be a spectator while you're running up the hill. The snowboarding I did see was really good though, so yeah I was pretty surprised.
|Don't call Owen on moving day if you want your truck deposit back.|
What do you think gave you the advantage?
I guess I've done a lot of wall rides in the past. Also filming with F.O.D.T has giving me the opportunity to hit a lot of big features, so that helps. I also tried a bunch of things I've never tried before and it worked out I guess.
That event looks like a circus, with all the weird flip on/flip out rail stuff. Is it getting too weird?
I'm not against flipping here and there as long as it's not the same thing over and over again -- people need to switch it up. As far as flipping on or off a down rail, I'm not really going to do it, but it's a crowd pleaser for sure.
Would you ever ride completely one-footed to win a contest?
No. I think I would tear my meniscus. I've messed around with it before, but I think Scott Stevens has that whole thing pretty dialed.
I heard he had a magnet implanted into the bottom of his foot.
No, I'm joking.
(Laughs) That would be pretty intense.
|Well, that's one way to exfoliate your face.|
Why did you split from Technine?
I filmed four parts with them and I just wanted to try something different. If I stayed with Technine, they told me filming for F.O.D.T. was a must and they couldn't really facilitate me filming with another crews, so I decided to part ways.
There were absolutely no hard feelings. I have nothing but love for all of those guys. I just wanted to switch it up a little bit.
Your video parts were good, and you've and done well in contests -- why did it take you over a year to find a board sponsor?
I think a lot of it is just where the industry is right now. Every company is struggling and doesn't have the extra budget to bring on new riders.
Last year I paid for all of my own trips and for all of my own filming and it was actually kind of cool because it reminded me if where I came from. I got to film with a lot of different people and it made me appreciate the opportunity I have as a professional snowboarder.