Boardercross superstar Alex Pullin has taken a little time out to get a few things off his chest. With a glass of French Chardonnay in one hand and a copy of "Italian for Dummies" in the other as he enjoys the afternoon European sun in tight white Speedos, Chumpy tells us: how he will conquer all before him in 2012, why no one can move like Jagger, how the development of his hoverboard is coming along and just why he will kick Russ Henshaw's arse... at Guitar Hero.
Red Bull: Chumpy! We haven't heard form you since you were sensationally overlooked for Cleo Bachelor of the Year a few months back. Where in the world are you?
Alex Pullin: Yeah, I was pretty heartbroken over that one. Nah, I’m currently in Europe for around two-and-a-half weeks. It’s unreal. Mostly because it’s summer and as you can imagine, between northern and southern winters, I rarely see heat like this. Europe is stunning when it’s bright and green. I might have to come back one day and ride motorbikes through the mountain roads for a month but I guess I’ll just dream about that for now.
RB: If you had that tan before the Cleo comp it might have been a different story. Now, last time you phoned home a few months back you were talking about hover boards or something equally as impressive...
AP: Every year I work hard to push my board designs for better performance and to improve my riding ability. A few months back I planned to come back to Austria at this time of year and work with Apex Snowboards - yeah they’re sponsors, so what? - to tweak some features in my boards for next year. With my coach Ben Wordsworth and tech team, we are all really happy with how the board testing went and I’m really excited to take them to the track! That’s the beauty of glaciers - snowboarding all morning and training in the sun in the afternoons... No big deal.
RB: Wow. Maybe you should consider becoming a contestant on The Amazing Race - you spend more time in the air than Lebron James...
AP: Yeah! I’d love to give that a crack. I reckon I know my way around. I’ve watched it a bit and I think my bag of tricks for finding hot lines through airports might get me on some flights well ahead of the others. It’s crazy the amount of travel involved with my ‘‘job’’. But I've adjusted since a young age and it almost seems strange when I don't visit an airport for a few weeks.
RB: What's coming up for you in the next month and the next half of the year?
AP: I’m so excited about the future!
RB: See, there you go with the Back to the Future, hoverboards referencing again...
AP: I seriously can’t wait. Without jumping ahead too much from where I am now, the Australian and New Zealand winter is set to be massive! With plenty of snow around already, I’ll hit some local contests in Oz and NZ, plus I’ve got a really solid snow camp in September at Cardrona, NZ. I feel it’s all going to be really productive and set up my next World Tour perfectly. I'm working hard on the training/gym side of things throughout the whole year which gives me a heap of new power to try new techniques on my snowboard. The on-snow camps are all about getting creative and that’s one of the things I love most about our southern winters.
RB: OK, so you’ve got a big winter planned but how’s the body holding up?
AP: Touch-wood but on the injury side of things I'm all good. It’s a fine line to push it to the limits in every contest throughout the season and come away clean. But I also feel that it’s a combination of judgment as well as strength that’s proving to keep me on snow, fit and healthy most of the time. Gear-wise, it’s all getting a bit of a makeover.
RB: Speaking of makeovers, there have been some pretty disturbing rumours about your new ‘‘comfy’’ style. And what’s the latest with haircut/moustache combo?
AP: Well, I don't care what anyone says, onesies are so comfortable! I’m thinking about bringing it back in the form of some kind of aviator suit maybe. It might give me that extra wow-factor in comps or act as a distraction. But as that’s a pretty fresh idea it’s gonna take a bit more time to develop before I bring it out at a contest. Stay tuned.
RB: Enough with the humour, funny guy. What can we expect from you this year, event-wise? Apparently there’s a kind of important qualifying trial taking place...
AP: First in Australia, I want to win all three stops of the Southern Tour. We will have some teams from other countries like USA, Russia, Korea and Japan which will make that a really fun challenge on tighter courses. From November onwards, I'll be travelling on the World Boardercross Tour throughout Europe, Scandinavia and North America. This coming tour is getting to the business end of things. Also, I aim to defend my World Championship title at Stoneham in Canada and race hard all season to finish in the top-three world rank once again. So yeah, kinda busy with all of that... Haha.
RB: Sounds like you’ve got everything ticked off other than world peace. Russ Henshaw reckons he plays a mean guitar and we're thinking about putting together a Red Bull band - what talents are you going to provide?
AP: So I've heard, though the grapevine. I think this calls for a Red Bull athlete battle of the bands! I've also played music my whole life and if I hadn't of gone down the snowboard path, it would have been music for sure! I play in a band with my sister and mate from back home. We are called "love Charli". It goes on hold a bit while I'm away, but a guitar is something I always need to have with me. We used to play a lot of gigs up and down the east coast of Aus. I can see us making a pretty fun battle out of this! A Red Bull party with music supplied by athletes... I like it.
RB: OK, it’s time for our quick-fire round. Beatles or Stones?
AP: The Rolling Stones. Jagger and Richards are a combo I've loved watching and listening to for years. And I don’t care what anyone says, no one has the moves like Jager!
RB: iPhone or Blackberry?
AP: iPhone. It’s always going to be better.
RB: Bonds or Calvins?
AP: Calvins are the best jocks!
RB: Mac or PC?
AP: Mac. Its’ clean, clever and keeps up with the speed of my mouse clicks.
RB: KFC or sushi?
AP: Sushi is the best food on the planet!
RB: Shuffling or the cat daddie?
AP: Cat daddie, as long as Kate Upton is NOT in the room.
RB: Angelina Jolie in Tomb Raider or Kate Upton now?
AP: Angelina in Tomb Raider hits another level!
RB: And what’s on your mind right... now?
AP: I've always been a fan of Ned Kelly and the Kelly Gang. Just saying.