Snow limits to Harpenden snowboarder’s success
PUBLISHED: 06:30 12 May 2016
A young snowboarder from Harpenden is making waves in the sport – after picking up two golds and a silver at the recent British Championships.
Eleven-year-old Liam Tynan travelled to Laax in Switzerland where he came first in the half-pipe and slope style disciplines and second in the border cross.
The Wood End pupil, who will be heading to Roundwood Park School next year, has been skiing for most of his life but only took up snowboarding three years ago.
However, the warm weather in the Alps almost caused problems with slush in a lot of places on the runs.
He said: “It wasn’t very fast at all. I could only hit the small jumps as I couldn’t get enough speed up for the bigger ones. that meant I couldn’t spin as much.
“We were last as the older ones were doing the bigger jumps and needed more speed.”
His favourite event is the slope style because of the inclusion of jumps and rails.
“It’s scored on style and what tricks you do,” he said. “The higher the spins you do the higher you can get marked. Methods and fives are my favourites. Methods are when you bring your legs behind you and you grab with your front hand on the middle of the board.
“[Border cross] is pretty tiring on your legs because you have to pump loads and bend down to increase speed. So when you get to the end and stand up properly your legs go to jelly.”
Fitness shouldn’t be a problem though for the keen sportsman, who plays rugby for Old Albanian and counts athletics, cycling and football in his
Snowboarding though is his main focus and he trains two times a week at Snowzone in Milton Keynes.
But he is in the process of applying to the GB freestyle team, a pathway which could lead him eventually to the Olympics.
He said: “The pathway riders are the younger people and there are different stages as you get older before you end up at Olympic level.
“We have to be able to do certain tricks like a triple corckscrew which is three flips and four full rotations in the air.”
His next targets are the English and British Indoor Championships which will bring him up against fimiliar foes.
He said: “I compete against the same people all the time. They’re friends when you are snowboarding normally but enemies when you are competing.”