Snowboarder wings it on world
SNOWBORDING for Michaela Davis-Meehan is about make or break - taking on a mountain as a freerider means there are no second chances.
You can watch her "winging it” in her movie Persian Powder at the Star Court Theatre in Lismore this Friday.
Ms Davis-Meehan is a Northern Rivers-based international athlete and film maker who has been featured in an international film festival that is currently touring.
A Kingscliff local, she is one of the world's elite snowboarders, competing on the Freeride World Qualifier Tour and her film Persian Powder is part of the Women's Adventure Film Tour.
Guest speaker at the event, Ms Davis-Meehan grew up in Newcastle, started her career on the snow competing in slopestyle events and was selected in the 2014 Shadow Winter Olympic Team.
"It's been a wild ride, quite literally, since departing from mainstream events to compete on the freeride circuit,” Ms Davis-Meehan said.
"Freeriding is a very challenging style of snowboarding and skiing on natural alpine 'big mountain' terrain, with no set course and the only boundaries are the cliff faces and non-survivable drops. It combines mountaineering and back country skills with riding skills and is really extreme.
"You only get one chance to take a look at the mountain from below and take some photos but then the next time you see it, youare literally at the top,dropping down, findinglines and jumping cliffs.”
Ms Davis-Meehan, 26, said competitors were judged on every technical aspect of a single run down the mountain - technical difficulty, style, air time and fluidity.
"It really is make or break, there are no second chances,” Ms Davis-Meehan, whose career was put on hold in 2010 when she broke her back in a pro slopestyle event in the US, said.
"You can have a plan but because of the minimal amount of time to view the mountain, you have to be able to wing it if things go wrong.
"There's no practice then, in the competition you get one shot.
"Last year I was travelling between comps in Europe with fellow Aussie freerider, Amber Arazny when she received a text inviting us to go heli-boarding in Iran.
"We said yes immediately. We were winging it on the trip, so we booked flights and flew to Iran the next day to meet with Mona Seraji, an Iranian snowboarder who also competes on the freeride tour.
Persian Powder, which features Ms Davis-Meehan, Ms Arazny and Ms Seraji, was made by Belgian Erik Bulckens and is being screened in Europe, the US, Canada and Australia as part of the Women's Adventure Film Tour.
The Lismore screening isat 7pm on Friday, November 9.