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3 most overrated "skiers"

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
#1 - PLAKE. Yeah, he may be the greatest self-promoter in the history of the sport. Yeah he may have appeared in one of the all-time ski movie classics. Yeah, he may be one of the best spokesmen for skiing of our time. Yeah... he may even crucify the bumps on 213's.

But is his technique really something you'd want to emulate?

#2 - SHANE. Yeah, his foresight on fats revolutionized the the industry (although CMH was having fats made 10 years before McConkey's presence). Yeah, he may have the cleanest backflip ever put on film - (he does). Yeah, he may be the most popular skier of our time because of his fun personality. Yeah, he may even tie together incredible tricks with incredible lines.

But is his style really that exemplary when put up against his peers?

#3 (i'm really gonna get sh#t for this) - THE MAHRES. Yeah, they were an American powerhouse in the worldcup for many years. Yeah, they won Olympic medals and world-cups. Yeah, Phil dominated the world for a season. Yeah, they even contibuted their energys to the future racers of America.

But how many other talented skiers from other countries can claim the same thing, yet rarely have their name recognized in the industry?
post #2 of 25
I have no idea regarding your rankings, but the remark about skiers from other countries not getting recognition from the industry is a HUGE assumption based on total unfamiliarity with how ski stars are treated in Europe. Pretty arrogant to consider the US media market the "standard of the world" as far as skiing goes, isn't it?
post #3 of 25
Quote:
Originally posted by Cheap seats:
#1 - PLAKE.
But is his technique really something you'd want to emulate?

#2 - SHANE.
But is his style really that exemplary when put up against his peers?

#3 (i'm really gonna get sh#t for this) - THE MAHRES. Yeah, they were an American powerhouse in the worldcup for many years. Yeah, they won Olympic medals and world-cups. Yeah, Phil dominated the world for a season. Yeah, they even contibuted their energys to the future racers of America.

But how many other talented skiers from other countries can claim the same thing, yet rarely have their name recognized in the industry?
All the boards (epic, powder, etc) on the net are getting so negative. It makes me wonder if people enjoy skiing anymore.

Plake - yea, his style in the bumps is something I'd like to emulate. Along with Mosely, Bloom, and a bunch of others. Don't forget the down-home tour he did to build awareness of skiing during a time when skiing was dieing. He may not be the kind of guy I'd hang-out with, but I give him all the respect in the world for his dedication to promoting the sport.

Shane - Yes, his skill is exemplary when put up to his peers. I've seen him ski lines that others never thought possible. And do it with style. I've seen him make recoveries before a 30' cliff that make Bode's recovery in the Olympics look like child's play. His style is different than Morrison or Krietler, or Coombs or Cummings, but he still has excellent skill that put 99% of the total ski population to shame.

The Mahres - an inspiration for a generation of US ski racers.
They were idols for this small town boy from Washington hoping to ski half as well they did/do.

Whether it's Eric and Rob Eric DesLauriers, Scotty Schmidt, Gordy Piefer, Seth Morrison, Dean Cummings, Doug Combs, Shane, Seth, Kent, or many others ripping it up in the films, there is a unique style that each brings to the sport. Maybe they aren't on the Canadian National Demo team, but who wants to be a ski ballerina when you can rip a steep Alaskan face with the speed, grace, and fluidity these guys show on every run.

Overrated? I don't think so.

[ December 21, 2002, 08:22 PM: Message edited by: Bullet ]
post #4 of 25
The Mahres had the misfortune of racing when the greatest World Cup racer ever, Ingemar Stenmark, was racing. Nobody pressed Stenmark as much as the Mahres. They were underrated if you ask me.
post #5 of 25
I seriously dont believe there is single skier in thsi forum that has stronger technique than Glen Plake. Maybe their technique is strong in different areas such as shor radius carving, but I have seen footage of him laying down some really nice, completely non-skidded carves on his long boards, granted they were of the Super G variety.

Secondly, are you really saying that shane is over rated just cuz his style isnt as good as some others?

Lastly, im with Bullet and Brownson on the Mahres, sure the mahres are famous in America, they are Americans! How many Germans or Austrians do you think were rooting for Bode in SLC?
post #6 of 25
Quote:
Originally posted by Karsten Hain:
I seriously dont believe there is single skier in this forum that has stronger technique than Glen Plake.
Then I want my money back for the Utah Gathering.

Seriously, I think that some of the top instructors and examiners here are way stronger in technique. In fact, Plake's older skidding style is downright questionable. I don't want to take away anything from a great skier such as Plake, but he is definitely not my idea of the ultimate in style & technique.
post #7 of 25
Soooo...when you go out on the hill you are attempting to "emulate" a "style"? Why not just ski? You might even develop your own style, one that makes you unique, one that says to your freinds "hey, here comes ***** " as they watch from down the hill. But maybe you're obsessed with some Nazi like ski school notion of what "proper" skiing is.
And if those 3 (or 4, actually) skiers aren't up to your standards, who is?
post #8 of 25
For some reason after reading a few of the posts here I get a picture in my head of Bill Clinton saying "What do you mean by technique?" Plake might be very inefficient with his turns but his balance, reflexes, landing skills and eye for a line in extreme terrain are outstanding. There probably are some members of this forum that will beat him on a conventional race course but few if any that will venture into the terrain he does.

[ December 22, 2002, 02:10 PM: Message edited by: Rio ]
post #9 of 25
Wow I hope you were doing this as a joke because Ive never read anything quite as lame as this post. shane and plake could both kick your but in more ways than one. Next time think about what your writing.
post #10 of 25
As my ski knowledge is quite limited I'll only offer anecdotal info on McConkey. Skied with him on Friday. He was riding the spatulas. Gooffiest looking ski ever. The thing that impressed me most was following him down a groomer at a fast clip. He actually held a nice line around the turns on a reverse sidecut reverse camber ski. I thought that was impressive.

The reverse sidecut reverse camber ski design is also pretty damm revolutionary. More so than a fat ski. Not sure they will catch on though.
post #11 of 25
dude how do you post such a stupid topic. bashing some of the best skiers the planet has been able to watch!! I have seen the great gift of glen plake sking at a mountian i worked at and I have to tell you, not only will he ski you and any one else into the hard rock ground under the snow, he will smile and not get sloppy nor will he turn down any run you throw at him. I am not posting any hate mail but really man, what films have you been watching? [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 
Well, thanks for the correction people - Obviously I must have been out of my mind bringing into question the ability of 4 skiers whom might be some of the most popular skiers of our time. Next time I'll just nod and agree with whatever the majority agrees with just so i'm not "lame".

I should have just left it that Plake and Shane and the Mahres have given back a huge amount to the sport they love, and not tried to wonder if that had anything to do with their high rankings in the "3 best skiers" topic.

Ummmm... on second thought, I think I'll stick with what I said.

Harpo, I was curious how those things would handle on hardpack. I know my slalom waterski has a very similar profile and works fine in the water, but just wonder where along the spectrum to solid ice that their handling would get sketchy. Guessing your speed settings just got punched up a notch?
post #13 of 25
Quote:
Originally posted by Cheap seats:
#1 - PLAKE. he may be the greatest self-promoter in the history of the sport. he appeared in one of the all-time ski movie classics. he may be one of the best spokesmen for skiing of our time. he crucifies the bumps on 213's.
#2 - SHANE. his foresight on fats revolutionized the industry (although CMH was having fats made 10 years before McConkey's presence). he may have the cleanest backflip ever put on film - (he does). he may be the most popular skier of our time because of his fun personality. he ties together incredible tricks with incredible lines.
#3 - THE MAHRES. they were an American powerhouse in the worldcup for many years. they won Olympic medals and world-cups. Phil dominated the world for a season. they contributed their energys to the future racers of America.
Thanks for listing some of the reasons these skiers are among the best. Over rated? Not a chance.

[ December 22, 2002, 11:05 PM: Message edited by: fiddler ]
post #14 of 25
Quote:
Originally posted by Karsten Hain:
I seriously dont believe there is single skier in thsi forum that has stronger technique than Glen Plake.
Technique according to who? This is a very broad assumption.

I would be surprised if there weren't quite a few pro instructors in this forum who had stronger technique. Perhaps they might not be as exciting to watch, but if you are defining technique to how close someone comes to excellence alongside the international instruction methods of measuring technique (all those letters things you know, USIA or whatever) then I don't think Plake is the pinnacle at all.
post #15 of 25
To say any of these skiers are overrated would be to say most other top-end racers and free skiers are overrated. These four represent a pretty good sample of excellence in their eras.
post #16 of 25
Overrated = me in an advanced-intermediate class.

Beat that.



S
post #17 of 25
Boy, there are some seriously confused people out there.I have been teaching skiing in the rockies for 30 years. I have skied with many demo teamers over the years and four of the current members are friends and associates. They are very good,strong,and technically proficient skiers.

In the last 7-8 years I have also skied (or at least been on the hill at the same time as the following greats.)
Doug Coombs-flows over difficult terrain effortlessly like no one else- unflappable though somewhat gangly looking on skis due to his build.

Scot Schmidt-spent three days with him a couple of years ago. Forget about what you saw in the Stump films. You should see what he can do on modern skis(he was on AK Launchers) Schmidt is still phenomenal. Graceful,creative,effortless,and timeless style. We had a discussion regarding his skiing. I suggested that I was an accomplished recreational skier though not someone who pushed the envelope like he did in his heyday. His dead serious response-" I don't take risks when I ski, I've never been injured skiing" Schmidt is so good that he can do what he does and still be totallly within his abilities.

Glen Plake- I used to think I was a better powder skier than him because I saw him oversteering some turns in pow in one of the Stump films. So much for that Idea. When I finally got to share the hill with him in Las Lenas a few years ago I realized that in any snow or terrain Plake is as good as it gets. He Rules! So what if he won't ski on little dinky, overly shaped skis.

Dean Cummings- Great in the air,creative when billygoating,strong mountain sense, but no way are his turns in a league with these others.

Shane McConkey-voted the best by a jury of his peers. Creative on the snow beyond belief-otherworldly in the air. I have seen him do things in a single run that run the gamut from 60 ft air to super g turns in difficult snow to absolutely precise jumpturns in an icy 50+ degree chute that was maybe 12 feet wide with a sketchy entrance all wrapped up with a figure 11 finale at 70 mph.

The list goes on. My point- demo teamers are very good skiers but no way are they in a league with these guys. Get over your hangups re:little,overly shaped skis and the accompanying technique as defining great skiing. THese guys are still all among the greatest out there on the big playground.I don't know who the three most overrated skiers are but I don't believe any of these guys belong on the list(well maybe cummings does if you only look at his turns)

The three greatest racers of all time. Now thats a whole 'nother topic. Stenmark,Killy,Tomba,Phil and Steve, Nancy Greene,Janica,Bode,Hermann............
post #18 of 25
First: Plake and McConkey are definitely NOT overrated! (Yes, you're entitled to your opinion - and I'm also entitled to think you're wrong.)

Second: I also skied with McConkey this past Friday and he was absolutely amazing to watch. I talked to him about the Spatulas and he said they're not meant to be an all around ski. He said with some adjustments to technique you can make them work fine on groomers/hardpack, but they're meant for powder. They're like 135 underfoot - you wouldn't be using a ski with normal camber and sidecut and those dimensions on ice, so I'm not sure the reverse camber/sidecut has anything to do with it's performance on hardpack. The Spatulas looked really fun, and if I can afford a pair when they come out - I'm sold.
post #19 of 25
How about all of those people who think that they are great, but for some reason the sponsorships, hook ups, etc just have not come there way. In all honest, who cares if your techniques is not to the PSIA standards if you are having fun? Sure, I drop my hand sometimes, my tips cross on occassion, I skid turns occassionally, but I always have fun. Thats the ultimate goal after all is said and done.
post #20 of 25
this thread indicates EXACTLY why the Pouters mock these fora.

what is this "technique" hangup, cheaps? and what about "emulation"?

golf is another technique-intensive sport that I used to do a lot of, and let me tell you, PGA-approved "proper technique" isn't what makes a great golfer.

pretty swings, pretty turns... who's having the most fun?

BAH! :
post #21 of 25
hey cheap seats-
would you like to buy my Plake autograph I could cut you a pretty killer deal on it.
duke
post #22 of 25
Are we running out of topics or what. "Ratings" are only for wishey washey people who want to go with the flow or can't make up their own minds on what to buy or who to vote for or who we should like or support. "But" as I see it from my perspective, "who freakin cares?" Why would we want to pick apart Plakes skiing style? Or better yet, anyones skiing style? Does anyone here critique poor slobs skiing down the slopes while you're relaxing on the lifts going back up the hill? It's your God given right to do so but, is that why you are there? If it is I feel sorry for you. You know, that's the very reason some people give up this sport. Because they are afraid they look bad and shallow people will make fun of them because they don't look good out there. Does anyone have to have "perfect" form and technical abilities to "have fun"? Do any of us here at this forum have perfect technical form and abilities? Some might think they do but let him or her cast the first stone huh?

I've never had a paid lesson in my life. I know I have flaws in my skiing style. Do I care? "No" Can I ski with the best of them? You bet your ass! Do I ski under the lift to impress people? "No" I ski under the lift cause that's usually where the best snow is. Do I care if the people on the lift above me are critiqueing my style? No. I'm out there to have fun.

Don't loose sight of the fact that skiing should be about "fun" and enjoyment of the elements that surround the sport we all love. And, there might be 5000 members on this forum instead of 4000 for the same reasons i've stated above.
post #23 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Lars:
Are we running out of topics or what. "Ratings" are only for wishey washey people who want to go with the flow or can't make up their own minds on what to buy or who to vote for or who we should like or support.

I've never had a paid lesson in my life. I know I have flaws in my skiing style. Do I care? "No" Can I ski with the best of them? You bet your ass!

Don't loose sight of the fact that skiing should be about "fun" and enjoyment of the elements that surround the sport we all love.
If we aren't running out of topics, then I don't see why you felt you needed to bother posting in this one. Ratings may be only for wishy washy people, but if you go back thru the history of this forum, topics which "rate" things seem pretty popular. Whats that say about this forum? My particular post did NOT "go with the flow" at all, and that's why I posted it. Most people just don't bother looking past the hype.

Your statement that you don't care about your flaws is pure BS! If you don't care about your flaws, you'd never have gotten as good as you "think" you have.

The fact is, every skier (at least every skier I know) had an impression made on them at some time in their life by some very accomplished skier. It's definately important formative input into everyones style. "Rating" skiers is a great way of telling people what type of style you happen to favor in skiing. I can go back to posts where you, and most of the other rating naysayers have "rated" skiers... and yet you all seem to feel that people who don't necessarily agree with you are taking the fun out of the sport and don't really understand it. Now there's logic for ya.
post #24 of 25
I bothered posting in this one because I fail to see the reason you would want to pick apart the skiing of some of Americas most famous skiers. Skiers who to some degree have inspired many individuals to take up the sport of skiing or to further themselves in this sport/pastime by wanting to ski like Plake, Mc Conkey and the Mahres. Do you think Plake should seek out the help of an instructor to eliminate his flaws? I know exactly what he would think about that. Even the very best racers fall. Does that mean their technique is flawed? Name me a skier that doesn't have flaws in their technique?

I guess you're right about one thing. I do care about how I ski. I take pride in the way I ski. But, I don't care about how I look to you or anyone else when I'm on the slopes.

Back to your original post about people from other countries who are just as good as the above mentioned but can't claim the same fame. I personally know some people who are just as good as Plake and McConkey. Maybe not as good as the Mahres. I'm sure there are alot more around. The difference being, they never got the chance or the breaks to become famous.

The other point I was trying to make is that there are alot of people out there, who won't let themselves improve because they worry about how they look while skiing. Afraid that they aren't good enough to try different things, or push themselves to get better because people are critiquing them constantly. Inferiority complex maybe. Another point I was trying to make, I wonder how many people have been scared away from this Forum by all the technical gargon. There are so many technical people here anymore, it scares off the newcomer who is afraid to look dumb, so he doesn't even post his question. Man, if we start ripping apart the style of Plake, McConkey and the Mahres, what does that do for the "Terminal Intermediates" as Oboe would say,of this world?

I don't post too much anymore, I just felt I had to post on this topic. It's not a personal attack on you Cheap Seats. Just on the topic.
post #25 of 25
OK Y'all- There's nothing different here than you see when guys pick apart a centerfold pic in Playboy. Boy are they critical! yet each one of these critics would jump at the chance of being with a woman just half as beautiful as the one in the pics! Ya gotta love it!

We can rate and pick apart many skiers all we want, but we must remember that there is NO ONE RIGHT WAY to ski; however, all good skiers have certain characteristics in common. Now, why can't we remember this?

It would also be good for us to re-read Todd's article- "Skier's Perceptions of Themselves". I may have misquoted the actual title, sorry Todd. The article is very poignant. (sp)?
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