Fisher Comes Full Circle |

Fisher Comes Full Circle

Steve Fisher said last year’s win was that much sweeter than the first, just because so many people had written him off and all that he’d been through in between his two golds.

He’d gone from being the hottest thing out there – making more than $200,000 a year – to not being able to get any sponsors to return his phone calls. Two broken vertebrae from a crash at the end of the 2004 season left him riding scared during his disastrous 2005 season. The following year he melted under the Olympic pressure, failing to make the U.S. team after posting middling results in the qualifying Grand Prix. He was also nearly snubbed for the Winter X Games, getting an invite only a week before the event.

On his second coming as a Winter X Games champion, Fisher said flatly, “I definitely overcame some hurdles.”

A bit of a ham among his teammates on the U.S. Snowboarding halfpipe squad, Fisher often offers up elaborate, untrue responses to questions to incite laughs. In the next instant, he can turn completely serious. Since he does this while keeping a straight face and the same tone, it’s hard to tell when he’s joking and when he’s actually telling the truth.

During a recent conference call with reporters, he responded to general questions about how he prepares for the Winter X Games by explaining that he’s been “fasting” and doing “800-pound squats.”

As for new tricks he’s been working on, Fisher said he’s been perfecting “back-to-back 1440s” in the Breckenridge pipe.

This is funny, at least to Fisher, because there’s the off chance that a reporter with little knowledge of halfpipe riding will actually take what he said literally. (Last year, Fisher’s run featured a backside 540 and two massive 900s sandwiched between two 720s).

What’s hard is to get the typically easy-go-lucky Fisher fired up about something, and, in turn, get him to offer up some unrehearsed insight about all that he’s learned after seemingly coming full circle.

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Posted on: January 23, 2008
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