Nate Johnstone Makes History Becomes Australia's First FIS World Cup Half Pipe World Champion
21 year old Australian half pipe rider Nate Johnstone has made history becoming the first Australian snowboarder to capture an overall FIS World Cup title in the half pipe after finishing a solid 5th place in the final event of the season.
Johnstone came into the final event of the season in Arosa, Switzerland in second place overall and it was believed that the biggest challenge for the overall title would come from the Japanese rider Ryo Aono.
However, with Aono not competing in the final competition Johnstone travelled to Arosa in the knowledge he was the FIS World Champion.
“It would have been really nice if Ryo Aono came to Arosa but it was still a good competition here. It was a strong field headed up by I-Pod (Iouri Podladtchikov) and everyone rode at a high level”. said the 21 year old reigning World Champion.
“I'm super happy that I won the globe as overall FIS World Cup champion and stoked that we have come to the end of a very long season. This was my goal at the start of the season and to become the first Australian series champion in the half pipe is a great feeling”.
“I would really like to thank my support teams at the Olympic Winter Institute and NSWIS for their support in helping me recover from my leg injury and become a force on the world stage again. I would also like to thank my sponsors at Rip Curl, Nitro Snowboards and R.E.D Protection for their continued support” commented Johnstone.
Johnstone has been a model of consistency on the World Cup circuit in season 2010 / 2011 taking gold at the World Snowboarding Championships in La Molina, Spain as well as 2 other individual World Cup gold medals in China and Italy to firmly establish himself as one of the most promising male half pipe riders in the world.
The likeable 21 year old will now return to Australia for a well earned break before preparing for major events in Australia and New Zealand during the southern hemisphere winter.
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