OCTOBER 1, 2013
INTERVIEW WITH RYAN FROM RIDE
BY: STEVE HARTMAN
In this skis.com podcast, Steve sits down with Ryan from Ride and they discuss Ryan being a sales rep for a company that sponsored him when he was a snowboarder, some of the well-reviewed rides and the Ladies Ride Collective.
STEVE: Hello. Welcome to another Summit Sports Podcast for skis.com and snowboards.com. I’m Steve and across from me today is Ryan. He’s a Midwest Sales Rep for Ride Snowboards and I’d give you a little history but I’d rather hear him say it. So, first off, Ryan, how are you today?
RYAN: I’m good. Thank you, sir.
STEVE: You had a long drive in.
RYAN: I did. Eight and a half hours.
S: Oh, so you’re all ready to go.
R: I am ready.
S: Okay, well tell us about your background and how you got with Ride.
R: In 1996 I got sponsored as a team rider for regional Midwest rep, kept pushing my limits with snowboarding knowing that that wasn’t going to be a lifelong sort of goal to keep riding so I started paying attention at tradeshows, started helping out, carrying boxes, looking at other brands and looking at a future in the sales aspect of it. I moved to a couple other brands such as Nitro Snowboards, SalTech, DC Shoes, I was riding for and couple years later I started working for Nitro Snowboards and it came full circle back to Ride Snowboards as the Midwest rep. So, basically I started off riding for Ride Snowboards and ended up working for them 12, 13 years later.
S: So, how long have you been with Ride now, since you’ve joined them most recently?
R: I’ve been with Ride, this is my 3rd full season as their rep.
S: Excellent. Now, Ride just signed Sebastian, now I may get this wrong, Toutant?
S: Recently, and he’s been huge since he was 13. Now he’s 19. He’s won gold medals in the X-Games and he just destroys the competition it seems. And you guys have him. What can you tell us about him and his relationship with Ride?
R: Yes. We’re very fortunate to have Seb. We call him Toots. Seb Toots. We’re very fortunate to have him. He’s a machine on the competition scene and also just freeriding. I think his relationship or his asset to us is he’s loyal. He’s very loyal to Ride Snowboards. He loves the brand. He also has a new board out called the Buck Up which took place of the DH2 and all of his knowledge has gone into that board so it’s one of his signature boards so I think Ride Snowboards and Seb, they complement each other really well.
S: Okay. Great. So, we’ve mentioned a little bit about product but let’s get into products. The first thing is the Machete. I’ve been told this is one very popular board and very well-reviewed. What makes it so great?
R: The Machete is that all-mountain freestyle board. We use a low rise rocker system on it. What makes it an overall a great board is its won top 10 Good Wood or Good Wood in all the snowboard magazines. It’s very easy to ride but they went through many, many molds to make this board and when you’re doing that you’re constantly going through molds and molds cost money, they cost time and obviously they invested and they did the research to find the perfect board and that’s what they’ve got is the Ride Machete.
S: Okay, what’s the skill level for it?
R: Skill level is intermediate to expert. But from my experience, I say you can put a beginner on it and within a couple of sessions the rider will be able to adapt to that board.
S: Okay, what’s a good place to take it? Is it good frontside? Good park?
R: That board from personal experience, I’ve rode that board in the park and I’ve rode it on powder days and I’ve rode it on groomers. It’s an all-mountain freestyle destroyer. You can go just about anywhere with that board.
S: Okay, great. The Slimeback has its origins from Slimewalls. How did this technology kind of translate into a…how did it translate?
R: We have a saying: It’s All Urethane. Urethane is a great product. We use it in our Slimewalls. It’s dampened the ride. It’s made the boards a little bit more flexible and also more durable so why not cross the urethane into the highback of the binding? And I actually ride the Slimeback. I can get the stiffness out of the binding but the relax…it’s a really good relaxed feeling in the highback. It’s there when I need it and it’s playful when I need it as well.
S: Okay, great. All right now let’s go on to something called the Ladies Ride Collective.
S: What is that?
R: The Ladies Ride Collective is a group of girls that we have from all over the country. They get together. They put their input on women’s snowboarding and how a woman’s board should ride for a woman. It’s not some guy, some man, some engineer sitting at a desk thinking that all boards should ride the same so we really use our women to build the boards for women.
S: Now what’s the difference between a men’s board and a women’s board?
R: Most men’s boards have a little wider waist width. Also we use carbons, we use different Kevlars, different stringers, different types of wood. And the women’s stuff we use the same stuff but we market down to fit a woman’s curvature or a woman’s shape. That goes back to LSD which is Ladies Specific Design. We want to make sure that all of our product is designed by women for women. So, we would take a men’s 2.0 Pop Rod and make it down to a 1.0 to fit a woman’s strength.
S: Awesome. Now, one of the questions I always ask somebody who comes in here especially if they’re a skier or a snowboarder. How often do you get to ride per year?
R: Not as much as I’d like to but that’s a good thing, that means I’m doing my job, but on a good year 60, 70 days. In my sponsored years: 90-110. And my wife can attest to that that she has it marked down on the calendar. But now, with being on the road full time, you know, I try to get a minimal of 40 days because not only am I a sales rep, I’m snowboarder.
S: Right. And do you have a board that you like? Do you have a set of boards that you like?
R: I do. I like the Ride DH. It’s camber, I’m kind of old school that way. I like the Machete GT, it’s a fun board and the Ride Kink is a very playful board.
S: Okay, great. Finally, any other products or technologies coming out this 13/14 season that’s worth mentioning or anything new you would like to tell us about?
R: 13/14 we have the…it’s not super new but we’re starting to break through with the Pop Wall which we’ve talked about urethane and carbon being mixed together. Our Buck up, our High Life and our Machete GT has urethane carbon that are actually in the sidewall which our engineers found that the further you move the Pop Wall to outer-skirts of the board or the board edge the more response you get, hence, we put it right in our sidewall giving excellent, excellent pop and control.
S: Very good. All right, Ryan, well thank you very much for making the long drive out here and hanging out for a little bit on the podcast. Again, to check out all the Ride snowboards and bindings and boots, please check out snowboards.com and again, for Ryan, I’m Steve and thanks for listening to the Summit Sports Podcast for skis.com and snowboards.com.