The Crazy Canucks’ Collection

The stories behind their gear

In competitions that are often decided by hundredths of a second, every detail counts. In World Cup downhill, those details go beyond technical skills, physical conditioning and mental preparation. They include the line you skied through each section of the course and the aerodynamics of your tuck, helmet and downhill suit. Did you choose the right skis, wax and tuning that day? Is everything functioning perfectly? If it isn’t you’ll fail. Because you can only win in World Cup downhill when you and all your gear are totally up to the task. It’s that simple. Or should we say, complex. 

Note: This is part of a collection of stories on the Crazy Canucks, written by ski writer Dave Fonda for the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame and Museum. Visit The Untold (and Told) Crazy Canucks Stories and also Who Exactly Was On Canada’s Greatest-Ever Ski Team? for more.
From left: Dave Murray, Steve Podborski (black helmet), Fischer RC4 ski, Ken Read helmet, race suit, gloves and boots, Read winning the famed Lauberhorn downhill in Wengen, Switzerland on Jan 8, 1980.