Posted by: PPHR | January 28, 2010

15 Days Until the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games!

Athlete Profile – Chris Del Bosco – Freestyle Skiing

Born and raised in Colorado, Del Bosco now competes for Canada due to a chance encounter. When Canada was first forming its ski cross team several years ago, one of Del Bosco’s close friends, Canadian ski cross competitor Brian Bennett, was out to dinner with the CEO of Canada’s ski cross team, Cam Bailey. Their waitress at the restaurant noticed that Bennett’s arm was in a sling, at which point the conversation turned to ski cross. The waitress, it turns out, was married to Del Bosco’s cousin, and the following day, Del Bosco – whose father is from Canada – was getting a phone call from Bailey asking if he would join the Canadian team.

Overcoming addiction

When he was growing up, Del Bosco recalls that his life was not one of moderation. “I was always the one growing up skiing, went bigger than all my friends, and bigger jumps, bigger everything,” he says. “And that’s kind of just how my life was, just to the limit, and maybe a little beyond sometimes.” He began drinking and smoking marijuana around age 14 or 15, progressing to the point that “I’d just drink and black out. And not know like what I was doing, or where I went, or how I got home,” he recalls. During one such episode in Dec. 2004, Del Bosco fell into a creek bed and suffered a broken neck. While lying there, his body temperature dropped to 83 degrees, and he only survived because a stranger happened to find him. Now fully sober, Del Bosco has not had a drink since Sept. 2006.

Born racer

“From a really young age, skiing was what I loved to do and cruising around the mountain and just having that freedom, that was what appealed to me,” Del Bosco says. “The problem was I was really good. It came really naturally to me and it was very easy for me.” Now fully focused on putting in the requisite work and no longer neglecting “the gym stuff and all the training and everything that I never did,” Del Bosco finished fourth at the 2009 World Championships and second in the World Cup ski cross standings in 2008-09, winning the Olympic test event at Cypress in Feb. 2009.

Scouting report

Asked about Del Bosco, reigning women’s ski cross world champion Ashleigh McIvor refers to her Canadian teammate as “the best skier on the circuit.” McIvor goes on to say, “He’s the most talented, for sure. And he’s been working really hard all summer to get strong. He’s like 220 pounds, almost.” McIvor adds that “He’s known for his amazing passes. Like everyone on the circuit knows if he ends up coming out of the start in fourth place, he can still win it. He’s just one of those natural athletes, right? He has this amazing ability and now he’s got the strength and the fitness to back it up, so he’s gonna be a serious contender.”

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