Richard Schabl: Skiing on the mind
Ryan Summerlin June 1, 2005
Before freestyle skiers such as Tanner Hall and Peter Olenick were pulling corked sevens in the Winter X Games, other risk-takers were doing tricks on skis that no one thought about before. One of those brave souls is still around.Richard Schabl lives on Boreas Pass five months of the year; the rest of the time, he is either skiing in Germany and Austria or soaking up the sun in the Caribbean.Regardless of locale, he spends all of his time with skiing on his mind.Growing up in the mountains of Germany, Schabl naturally turned to skiing as a career.I grew up in a ski resort where only a few jobs were available, he said. Professional skiing was one of them.In 1984, Schabl won the FIS Freestyle World Cup in Breckenridge. He was 23. Schabl has also won three world championships (his last was in France in 1986) in freestyle skiing.Along the way, Schabl has done more than simply win competitions. He invented the one-handed pole flip and owns a unique world record 22 flips in 60 seconds on a ski deck (a revolving carpet). He set the mark on one of the biggest TV shows in Europe in 1993, called Aber Hallo.He was skiing in Breckenridge as a pioneer when freestyle skiing was established. It was one of the best times I can remember, he said. Creativity was the key for success and you could see tricks which were unbelievable like triple front flips with two twists in it. The scene was almost the same like right now with freeskiing. For me its the best ski show in the world.