V16N03 – Scanners 3: JP Solberg

Name: JP Solberg

Age: 19
Country of citizenship: Norway/U.S.A.
Sponsors: Burton, Dragon, Volcom, Gravis, Nixon, Base Boardshop
Stance: Goofy, Angles? I don’t know. Width? Don’t know.
Hometown: Bergen, Norway
Home mountain: Voss
Years riding: 7
U.S. arrival: Birth date.

Describe a winter’s day at your home mountain.
Get up, eat breakfast, and record some music for my MD-whatever I wanna listen to that day, put my gear on, strap on, and just slide. My house is pretty much right next to a ski resort, and I’ll just ride all day, wherever I want, and do whatever I want! I love it!

What was your first setup?
My first setup was an Edge board, Black Snow. It sucked-it weighed 70 pounds, and the screws from my inserts came out from underneath the board.

Who did you ride with back then?
It was all friends. We were the shit back then, building kickers that didn’t make any sense at all and just hitting it full speed all day. I’m surprised we’re still alive. If I were to go back today, and try some of stuff we did back then, I’d die-my knees would be gone!
Bj_rn Mortensen-we go way back. Now I ride mostly with the Robot Food crew. We have so much fun doing all the stuff we did back then but on a whole safer level! And the Uninc crew-Romain (De Marchi), Gigi (Rà...f), DCP (David Carrier-Porcheron), and Jeff Anderson.

Who were your heroes as a kid?
I was really into soccer, so I guess it would have to be Eric Cantona-and my dad ’cause he was a pilot, and sometimes he’d take me to work. I’d sit in the cockpit with him-coolest thing in the world!

How did you get noticed?
I think ’cause I knew how to throw down backflips pretty good. Yeah, it was all about the backflips. I don’t know, my local board shop hooked me up with gear and introduced me to all the reps. After that, Rene Hansen (of Burton) came in and took care of everything.

Which past Scanners have influenced you?
I’ve been riding with Bj_rn Mortensen pretty much since day one. He’s always had good style. Other than him, Terje and Daniel ’cause they were always in the spotlight.

Are you highly recognized in your home country?
Sometimes people stop me, but no, not really. It’s better in my hometown. You’d think it would get me more girls, but it doesn’t!

Did you have to do a compulsory military service?
Usually in Norway, you can get off the hook pretty easy by lying and telling them you have mental problems or some shit. But do you think that worked for me? Before the service, everybody needs to go for a checkup, and this Sergeant had his mind made up that I was going! Idiot. I faked everything-I was colorblind, could hardly hear-I was like, “What? Can you speak up! Huh?” Plus, I had all these doctors’ diagnosis for injuries. He was all, “Well, if you can snowboard with all these disabilities, you can serve your country! You won’t be holding no gun, but I’ll find something that will fit you perfectly!” We’re talking twelve months of hell, wasting my time! But Burton got it delayed. The army wants me in two years from now. We’ll see about that.

What American riders do you like watching?
Whoever I’m riding with, ’cause then you see every aspect. I give American riders props ’cause they’re concerned about their style. Style is everything.

What really bothers you about the States?
The drinking age! It pisses me off so bad sometimes, when everybody goes out and hooks up with girls, I’m sitting in my hotel room watching HBO.

Was it a struggle to adjust to landing tricks in powder?
I suck at powder landings. I took some really bad falls this year. Sometimes I hate powder ’cause you’re in the air thinking, “Hee-hee, easy as f-k!” And when you come down, you just eat it! But that’s what makes it interesting.

What gets you motivated to learn?
I don’t know, it just happens. If I want to try something, I try. And I won’t go home ’til I get it.

When traveling, do you seek out others from your area to hang with?
Not always, but sometimes. It’s cool if you want to talk about someone right in front of the person. Wille and me are always talking dumb shit-it’s funny.

What do you do to stay connected with the scene that brought you up?
I usually call people up when I’m home to get the update. I ride some competitions, and go to some parties-it’s cool ’cause all the guys you used to ride with are there. They’re all busting their ass to beat you ’cause now you’re a pro, and it’s a big deal to them.
The scene has changed in that everybody wants to get sponsored at any cost! You see it whenever a camera shows up-the kids go nuts-throwing down shit that will get you killed, just hucking like there’s no tomorrow!

Who are your picks for up-and-coming Scanners?
I know Mads Jonsson, Per Loken, Eero Ettà¢la, Eero Niemel , Mikkel Bang are going to come on the scene! They’re good!