With Olympic freeskiing glory on the line for the first time, get ready for some new names climbing up the podium this season, like 19-year-old Lyman Currier, a double threat from Boulder, Colo., who recently got his first X Games Aspen invite to compete in Ski SuperPipe. Currier won the FIS World Cup slopestyle in Sierra Nevada, Spain, last season and has also been popping up on some recent halfpipe podiums. He finished third in the pipe at the Dew Tour in Breckenridge in December in front of a crowd that included one of his biggest fans sporting a sign that read, "In my next life I want to come back as Lyman's mom – again." XGames.com tracked Currier down for a chat about competing in two disciplines.
Congrats on getting your first X Games invite. What are you most looking forward to in Aspen?
I go for it in any event I'm in, but especially for my first time competing at X Games I can't wait to throw down. I'm so stoked to compete: X Games has been my dream from the beginning, since long before the Olympics were even a thing for us. I'm hoping to add another double to my run before X Games to step it up for the occasion.
This week is your last chance to make the cut for Sochi, and when I spoke with David Wise last week after he secured his spot he said that just making the U.S. team was almost the bigger challenge than the Olympics themselves are going to be. How imposing is it to go up against these guys on the U.S. Freeskiing team?
It's crazy. The field is so deep and the U.S. team is so talented, and there are definitely more than four of us who deserve to be in Sochi. But getting on a podium this year was definitely a huge confidence booster and shows me that I can compete on a big stage with these heavy hitters.
You're one of very few athletes going for both halfpipe and slopestyle in Sochi. How's that going?
The competition is going to be pretty intense, in pipe and maybe especially in slopestyle, where the field is just stacked. I'm just looking forward to traveling around with some of the best buds I've made since joining the U.S. Freeskiing team in 2011, and just maybe those travels will take us all the way to Sochi.
How do you get into a relaxed headspace at the top of the course when so much is on the line?
I was stoked the first two big events of the season were here in Colorado. Just competing under the lights and looking down at an amazing crowd in my home state, full of my friends and family, it's hard not to be relaxed. This is what I love to do, what I've dreamed of doing and now that I'm here I'm just having fun. I try not to put too much on any of it.
What are you most looking forward to as the rest of the season unfolds?
I feel lucky just to be competing this year and to be in good health as everyone's getting all fired up about the Olympics and everything else. I'm looking forward to seeing everybody else at their best and seeing what everyone brings now that we have this big spotlight. You know, skiing. That's what I do. I'm just loving every second of it all.