Patrick Mayrhofer's reasons to watch PyeongChang 2018

Austrian world Para snowboard champion explains why his sport is one to watch at Winter Paralympics. 29 Jul 2017
Patrick Mayrhofer of Austria

Patrick Mayrhofer is hopeful he can be competitive at the Paralympic Winter Games in 2018.

ⒸJoe Kusumoto
By Dave Phillips | For the IPC

The upcoming 2017-18 Para snowboard season will be crucial for athletes ahead of the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games. Austria’s Patrick Mayrhofer is targeting his Paralympic debut, hoping to bounce back from a season-ending injury in the men’s SB-UL category.

While he knows why PyeongChang 2018 is important for himself, he gives three reasons why others should also follow along:

Snowboard-cross is unpredictable

“Everything is possible in snowboard-cross. We have curves, we have jumps, we have rollers, and there are so many things that can happen during a race. So even if you are in first position and make a little mistake, immediately the position can change and maybe you can lose the race. So for people who watch the snowboard cross it is very thrilling to watch and very interesting.”

History in the making

“Firstly, snowboarding is a very young sport in the Paralympics. Sochi was the first time we competed, and we only had one class there. It was just riders with lower extremity injuries allowed, and now we have three different classes. So people should watch it to see that it’s a very thrilling sport we do.”

Atmosphere like no other

“Finally, overall, the people who watch the event will see that we are a big family. They will see on the race slopes that we fight against each other, everyone wants to win. But after that or before the race, maybe you can see on the camera that everyone is smiling, everyone has a lot of fun, of course it’s racing, but it’s a little bit more too.

“It’s relaxed, we have fun with each other, even if we compete. I know there are some sports where they don’t talk to each other anymore because they are so competitive, and I hope it will stay as it is right now, that everyone can work with each other, and this could also be a very nice reason to see that it’s a thrilling sport, anything can happen, and we work together, we snowboard together, I think this could be a very nice thing.”