Phil Casabon X Games Real Ski Interview
02.14.2018 Quebec, CA
View the entire edit at XGames.com---
What was it like working with Brady & your brother on such a time sensitive project?
They were the right people to do it with, not saying that I couldn’t have done it with anybody else, but it felt really good surrounded by this crew. It was mostly Brady, B-mile and myself because my brother was busy with his office work but he would be there anytime he could.
It can get pretty tense considering the short amount of time, crazy weather, expectations, mechanical dysfunctions and dealing with skiing in the street’s in general. So, it’s key to be comfortable with who you with. Brady is cool calm collect at all time mostly so he would transcend that along when i’d get too impulsive and it kept a happy medium for the most part. B-mile unpurposely acted as the mediator of Brady and I’s relationship with his good spirit helping to keep the balance and whole vibe good.
What were some of the pros & cons of shooting in Quebec?
The pros are that I know a lot of the spots, how to access them, which ones not to go to because of security and have most of the equipment necessary to complete the mission. The cons is probably that a lot of spots have been seen often in the past, so it’s hard to find new locations when you have limited time. I don’t mind going back to spots though, architecture rarely changes, but my skiing does and skiing is the focus. As long as I do something I’ve never done before, I am fine with revisiting spots a few years after I last went.
Talk to us about your music choice. How important is healthy living for you?
At first, Eric Iberg had talked Cormega into doing a customized track for the project and we were pretty hyped on the outcome. Then, probably halftime into the contest and gathering a few clips, we realized that it didn’t have the feel we were trying to give. So, Brady and myself started searching for something that would represent us in our best light. Brad’monk’z had been bumping Tha God Fahim and one night I randomly stumbled upon the song ‘Eat 2 Live’. We felt it was the right one instantly and Brady made the moves to get the rights to it.
It represents pretty accurately where I am at with the direction of my eating habits, knowing that what I eat plays a big part of who I am, I emphasize on this. We ate like king’z during this process, I’d travel everywhere with my food bags and cooler full. Quinoa, hummus, sweet potatoes, veggies, hemp/chia/pumpkin seed, almond milk, ginger and herb’z of all kind.
How did you go about choosing & prioritizing the spots?
First of all I chose spots where the surrounding ambiance was calm, hopefully with natural speed and where I knew I could do a trick. Then, Brady and I would discuss if the spot had a look that would stick out enough to make the trip to that location. The remaining spots were spontaneous, some places we stumbled upon and I had a trick in mind for that type of spot, the sw 50-50 for exemple.
What goes through your head while building the feature? How do you overcome particularly difficult obstacles?
While building it, I’m most likely thinking about something that is way too hard and will not end up working, either setting my expectations really high or hoping it will simply work out. Right before I drop, I pray- give thanks for protection and success of the vision, take a deep breath and drop in.
Perseverance with the knowledge that hard work pays off. Also, think about it relentlessly before going into it, lose sleep over it. Not that I want to but that’s just how my system works, natural defense mechanism maybe.
What was the toughest trick to get and why? Was the challenge more mental or physical?
It was the stair grind into sw stall to sw lip. It was blind, quick and not lined up for this trick. It was also in the very beginning of the process and I hadn’t figured out how to pace myself in between clipz. I went at it the day right after the opening clip, so I was exhausted since that was a very hard one as well.
It didn’t work out that first day, I started figuring it out by the end of the day, studied the clipz that night. We went back the next day and tried for 7 hours, we got something out of it but it wasn’t fast pace enough.
The 3rd day there was a big rain storm on it’s way and I was afraid that there would be no snow left after that for a while. So, we went there at 7:00 am and I started bashing into that closeout rail, again n’again. Drained mentally and physically but sure enough it worked out right when the rain started!
Many of the tricks thrown required a going into a certain part of the feature blind. Is this something you focused on? If so, why?
Indeed, it was not something that was pre planned but I guess it’s where my progression has naturally taken me. Blind is the most awkward approach to features so most of the time it’s never been done. I am trying to do things that most likely hasn’t been done or seen before so those are the tricks that came to mind.
How long have you been skiing street for? Talk to us about the evolution of your outlook on urban.
My first clip skiing in the streets was 15 years ago, a down rail. Early on, I did whatever was thought of as cool, I was mostly inspired by skiing. A lil later, Freedle Coty got me on Level 1 and got me watching more snowboarding from which I picked a lot from. Until I started mostly watching skateboarding and took a lot from there. Now it’s big blend.
How would you describe your Real Ski edit?
Fresh n’ healthy, prally.
Describe the emotions you were feeling when you first got invited.
When I got invited again this year, I felt it was time to capitalize on something I had played a big role in, have it be certified basically.
What were some of the highlights from the other Real Ski edits?
Anti- The abundance of variety in his spots and accurate trick choice for them. Also, his aggressively fluid style, everything’s sharp.
Magnus- Incredible creativity, high ability to make the most plain things become beyond interesting.
Keegan- Everything is fat and stylized, good mix of progressive tricks and big spots.
Mike- Hornbeck’s authenticity shine’s light on every video piece he’s in, his skiing is sharp and gives credit to details. The highlight for this particular edit was classic wrecka style layered with nice cut’s.
LJ- Amazing, conceptually, skiing and filming wise. This video got me extra hyped because it’s something I been wanting to do forever but never committed to, because it’s the most work.
Are you going to be watching the Olympics next week? Who will you be rooting for?
Yesir, I will. I’ll be rooting for Henrik, he deserves to win more than anybody else there because his skill set is higher and he’s been gifting skiing in so many way’z for a while now.
What are your plans for the rest of the season?
Stack clipz, learn and get better on skis and stay healthy. Should have two more video projects coming out by the end of the year.