If you can only make it to one race in Canada next year, make it to Whistler. I may be a little biased considering it was the last race I went to during a month long trip, traveling from race to race around British Columbia, but damn was it a helluva way to finish it all off. Whistler wasn’t like any of the other races I went to. From the day we rolled in till the day we crawled out, hung over, we were treated like athletes instead of grungy skate rats. We had access to the athlete’s lodge, which included cheap nightly rates. We received 50% off or free admission to some of the most accommodating (I say accommodating because I don’t know of any other bars that don’t “give the boot” to patrons that flip tables over or throw wet napkins coated in hot sauce at each other?) bars in town.
Even without the rad hookups that left me borderline delusional (I actually began to think I was someone important after a couple of days), Whistler was the cherry on top of my proverbial skateboarding cake. It’s a scenic town nestled in the Blackcomb Mountains with raging rivers, dense woods, and a rather large bear population. Our racer packets actually included guides on how to deal with bears. I encountered several of these rascals both on and off the racecourse. Speaking of the racecourse, it is challenging indeed, not even considering having three other riders drafting you close enough to smell your butt funk. The course boasts eight technical corners with pavement that is 2 steps above cheese grater status. I often found myself drifting out of the money-line after misjudging my ability to keep traction. It would have been an even more interesting race had the weather been the same patchy, on and off, rain as on practice day, but we were glad that on race day it was dry.
A big part of my Whistler experience was interacting with the different crews, in particular, the guys from Switchback Longboards (holla!), who hooked it up with a ride, not just to Whistler, but every other race in Canada I was there to ride—I’ve got mad love for those Ke$ha jamming, hitchhiker-pick-upping, homosocial-humored dudes (don’t ever look at Kelsey’s belt buckle). Canadians are so nice though. After spending so much time with the Switchback dudes, I was concerned they were just trying to lure me in so they could molest me, especially after they suggested we cram four skaters into a two-person tent. Fortunately they were just trying to help a brother out and not lusting after my butt. Ha ha!
Official Whistler Recap Video:
Anyway, Lee Cation pulled off the sickest longboarding race I have ever been to, and on his first try! That’s something way easier said than done. The amount of effort put into the event was reflected in the way things seem to always come together smoothly; it made it one of the most enjoyable experiences of my life. If none of what I said has convinced you to show up to Whistler next year, let it be known there are hot Australian chicks everywhere in Whistler. I’m not sure if there’s some sort of human trafficking deal gong on up there? Bottom line, the Aussie chicks were hot and plentiful. See you in Whistler next year.