As most of you know, Sage Kotsenburg won the first Gold Medal awarded at the Winter Olympics held in Sochi. On Saturday February 8, 2014 Sage competed in the Mens Slopestyle Snowboarding event and surprised everyone with his Backside 1620 Japan Grab, which ultimately won him – and America the first Gold Medal of the Olympics.
Sage is a local Park City rider. Growing up in Park City with very supportive parents helped Sage to progress to where he is today. Derek Johnson – a close friend to Sage – was nice enough to tell us about his friendship and snowboarding relationship with Sage. Derek is four years older than Sage, but the two competed together when Derek was 18 and Sage was 14. “We were both competing in a competition for a PacSun sponsorship and I came in 5th and he came in 6th. They choose me to give the sponsorship to and I thought they were stupid. They saw me, a 18 year old kid who luckily barely beat this 14 year kid who was way better than anyone in his age group, and they still choose me.” Derek laughed as he told me of another experience with his friend: “Sage and I were talking and he told me ‘Hey Derek *Nike wants to sponsor me, thats kinda lame huh?’ and I just thought that was so funny cause he didn’t completely understand that whole marketing thing at that point in time (being only 14 years old)”. Derek eventually went on to choose another career path, while Sage continued going to snowboarding competitions like the Dew Tour and the X Games. From Dereks view point Sage has not changed a bit since they became friends. “He came home from Sochi and his yard was full of a bunch of signs from fans, and there were cars driving by all the time taking pictures of his house. He thought it was funny, but it didn’t go to his head. He is still the same cool guy as he was before he was famous.”
Here are some pics of Sage in everyday life.
From Dereks point of view “Sage always had a crazy positive outlook on everything. It could be the worst day ever and a complete blizzard for competing and he would still be totally pumped and excited to ride. He was never negative, always positive. Whether it be a bad course or weather conditions he was always positive and ready to ride.” Its people like Sage that make Park City such a great place to train as a competitive snowboarder. As a Utah company we are proud to have athletes like Sage Kotsenburg riding with us in Park City.
*Note – Nike is now a proud sponsor of Sage. The quote above is to demonstrate an aspect of Sages early life. Ski ‘N See is a proud retailer of Nike Snowboarding equipment.