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King of the Hill

King of the Hill

A tribute to Shane McConkey
posted: 07/23/2009
Shane McConkey on the set of the movie Claim, Haines, Alaska

“Shane McConkey was a supernova in skiing,” says Jeff Mechura, brand manager for K2. A pioneer of the freeskiing movement in the early ’90s, McConkey routinely pushed the limits of the sport, in the process transforming the parachute into a piece of ski gear. He quickly moved beyond the role of innovative athlete to innovative ski designer, helping ignite the fat-ski revolution. “Shane almost singlehandedly forced that change,” says Tim Petrick, vice president with Rossignol. McConkey went on to sire the new reverse-camber “rocker” technology, first with the Volant Spatula and later the K2 Pontoon. “These skis will be remembered as historical markers in the evolution of ski design,” Petrick says. McConkey, 39, died in a ski-jumping accident in the Italian Dolomites last spring. He is survived by his wife, a young daughter and
countless friends in the ski world. “From the boards we ski on to the perception of our sport, without Shane, skiing would be a much different sport than it is today,” Mechura says. 

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