Youth embarks on snow sports NZ development programme

Jacqui at the Local Rag connected with talented local snowboarder Txema Mazet-Brown, currently based in Switzerland, to talk about his recent experience on the snow. 

Where have you been based for the last few months?

The last few months I’ve been based around Laax (Switzerland), a resort that has a really good snow park and is so fun to ride.

Tell us about the programme and who is involved 

The programme I am currently doing is the Snow Sports NZ freestyle national development programme, which ranges from upcoming snowboarders and skiers, aged 12-16.

What does your daily routine look like?

My daily routine would be get up at 7 , get into my snowboard gear, have breakfast, brush teeth, make lunch, 10 min drive to the mountain, train on the park for 6 hours also have lunch up there, drive down, do exercises and school, go to sleep and do it all over again. Oh and definitely have fun.

What competitions have you competed in and how have you done so far? 

I have competed in a World rookie tour slopestyle (jumps and rails) in Livigno (Italy) where I landed my run to qualify for finals, but couldn’t land anything in finals. 

The second competition I competed in was a Europa cup premium big air (one jump) in Davos (Switzerland) where there were two heats of 23 riders. The top 3 of each heat went straight to finals, then 4-9 place in each heat went to semis. 

I qualified for semi finals in 9, then 6 riders went through from semis into finals; I managed to land my trick Backside 1260 to qualify in 3rd for finals. In finals you got 3 runs and your best 2 different tricks counted towards your score. I landed my first run, a 1260 – I was so hyped – failed the second and landed the 3rd run which was a Switch Backside 900 double grab (I would have like to do a Switch backside 1260 – but next time). 

I was so stoked, I ended up getting 8th in finals which made my day because this was my first big air and the level was really high.

What is your reaction to the recent success of the Kiwis at the winter Olympics?  

My reaction to the recent success of the kiwis at the Olympics was so crazy – just to see Zoi get gold in slopestyle on the last run of the event was amazing. It gave me an extra boost because to see her go through the same programme I’m following and then get gold, so sick. Then getting bronze as well. Also seeing Tiarn put some amazing rails together and some technical jumps was crazy because I find he rides so steezy. Seeing that he had the potential to get a medal is absolutely motivating.

What happens after this? What do you hope to achieve moving forward? 

On the 28th of February our crew moves to Leysin (Switzerland) where I will compete in the big air and slopestyle at the Junior world champs, starting beginning of March. I am crazy exited to compete there. I hope to get on the podium in those events. There should be a live stream somewhere, but I’ll keep everyone up to date on my Insta. After that there are some more events before heading back to NZ.

To help cover as much of the $22k for his travel, coaching and comps, Txema has some fundraising coming up that the community can get behind – please visit the donations page: https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/txemas-snowboard-freestyle-junior-world-campaign.