Today’s Sporst Babe Of The Day is a pretty funny guy. He can also fix your leaky faucet, oh and barrel down an SBX course like it’s nobody’s business. It’s our extreme pleasure to introduce our very extreme Sports Babe Of The Day, Jonathan Cheever, of the U.S Snowboard Team.
Cheever has competed in over 40 Snowboardcross World Cup races and is the 2011 World Champion. He’s coming off of his 2012-13 season gunning for a spot on the U.S Olympic Team for Sochi 2014. This babe is known for his big airs in the halfpipe and his command of the gnarly kickers on the SBX course.
One way or another, Cheever is looking to make an impact in the world of snowsports. When he’s not racing (or plumbing… spoiler alert he’s a certified plumber), this babely Boston native is working on influential projects like SBX The Movie. Keep tabs on this one, guys, he’s making moves.
Check out these 20 Questions with Jonathan Cheever and se if he can convince you to join Team Cheever by the end, we know we’re sold.
20 QUESTIONS WITH JONATHAN CHEEVER
1. First of all, you’re a Boston guy, how are you taking the Stanley cup loss?
At first I was pissed! The series seemed evenly matched or maybe slightly in the Chicago’s favor. It isn’t the result that bothers me. Its how it went down. A goal for the go ahead in Game 6 in the third period with minuets left. Then they just played on their heels hoping to take it in game 7 before game 6 was over.
I guess it eases my mind a little knowing how beat up the Bs were. Everyone says the sportsmanship between the two teams was really high. So that is okay… but I wanted to go to the parade.
2. How did you get started snowboarding? And when did you realize you wanted to do it professionally?
Long story short… I was into every sport imaginable growing up. My parents had coupons from a gas station promotion that allowed my brother and I free snowboard lessons. Well we jumped on snowboards and loved it. That was in 97′
Fast forwarding…In 2004 I was in New Zealand for the summer. Originally it was supposed to be for a month. I ended up winning a ton of events down there, I was building a name for myself down there and making a little bit of money. At least enough to extend my trip.
When I came back to Massachusetts, I told my parents that I really didn’t want to go to college anymore and give snowboarding a go. I was already a licensed plumber at this point so as far as real life skills were concerned. I had something. I think my mother’s response was you should have moved west last year.
3. Sochi is right around the corner, what are the most important things to focus on heading into an Olympic year?
In all honesty, I try not to think about focusing too much. I am a focused individual. Everything I do, whether its turn wrenches or race I put everything I have into it. I am where I want to be physically and am only getting stronger. I know I have the talent to not only make the US Olympic team (which is going to be really tough as is) but I have the talent to win.
I am just going to do what I do, execute and everything else will happen. Cliché huh?
4. You’re more or less a veteran on the U.S Team, what advice do you have for some of the rookies?
Weird thing is, the rookies on our team don’t need advice. They are freaks. They are insanely good. I am talking about Hagen Kearney, Trevor Jacob and I guess Alex Tuttle is a little beyond rookie status.
But for everyone else, it’s just to stay on the right track. There are no secrets to make a dream come true. Hard work, dedication and developing talent.
5. Do you have any crazy pre-race rituals?
I really don’t have any rituals. I guess I kind of told myself that it’s for the mentally weak. If I messed around with my gloves like Nomar did when he stepped up to the plate and screwed up. Then I would be thinking if I didn’t do it right. I just get in the gate and count on instinct. But to each their own right?
6. What is your most memorable moment as an athlete?
I am sitting here thinking I do not want to take the easy way out and say there are so many memorable moments… but there are!
In recent memory, it was going to Sochi for a Europa cup two years ago. It snowed so much and the terrain there is insane. Its almost lift access Alaska.
Well none of my gear showed up. I was riding nipple deep pow, on the 2014 Olympic Women’s Downhill Venue on a dirt slow rental board with borrowed gear and sunglasses because I had no goggles. It was nuking outside. Snowflakes the size of pancakes. The trail was about 50 yards wide and had a 40-degree pitch. There was no one on it. It was eerie. Probably the best turns I ever made on a snowboard.
7. You still have a lot of miles left on the snow, but what do you see yourself doing after your snowboarding career?
To be honest I am not sure what I see myself doing after my competitive career. I would love to be involved in the snow industry. But I do not know what I will be doing. That isn’t to say I don’t have any options.
I am a licensed plumber. This video production thing I have been doing is fun… and a ton of work. With that said, check out SBXtheMovie.com for the latest on my current project as well as youtube.com/teamcheever
To be honest too… I really like playing poker. I may put aside a 401g account and see if I can run alright playing cards. If I do, maybe I’ll stick with it. If not, maybe I’ll turn wrenches.
8. In an extreme sport like snowboarding, how do you balance pushing your limits while still staying healthy and injury free for races?
Balance is the toughest thing to find in snowboarding. I guess more figuratively than literally. This is my first year in four years where I haven’t had to finish my season with a surgery. It’s nice to be able to walk. But with that said, last year I may have been too careful. I think the best thing to do is just live for now.
I try and stay as healthy as possible with diet and exercise. But my snowboard won’t stop me from skating or playing other sports… but to be real. It has in the past. And I looking back, I didn’t like it.
Sometimes the way to look at it is just to have fun. The other way to look at it is, I need to train the part of my brain that makes split second decisions as much as I need to train my body to be strong. I can’t race dudes on snowboards all summer. So swinging a baseball bat, playing hockey or trying to keep up with my roommate Hagen Kearney (pssst, check out Hagen as our SBOTD here!) on a skateboard helps.
9. What is the hardest thing about being a pro rider?
Its probably a toss up between the lack of a consistent income, the injuries and maintaining healthy relationships with friends, significant others (that’s I guess is speaking generally. I only have one!) and maybe the most difficult is being away from my dog Sam.
I love what I do. Don’t get me wrong. But sometimes you catch me and my bank account is awesome… other times it is…well let’s say nothing to write home about, unless I am writing home asking for money.
10. If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 items would you have to have with you?
You know, I never been much of a camper. And by items I guess you mean that doesn’t include living creatures and I am probably not at an all-inclusive resort.
I guess I would want a big boat, a ton of water and enough fuel to get me off the desert island. I like the winter better.
11. What do you want to be remembered for?
I never thought about what I want to be remembered for. If I had money I would probably be a philanthropist. Right now I help out as much as I can with Big Brother and Big Sister in Utah. I would love to be remembered for giving back and helping others. But in the sense to inspire others who are as lucky as me to do the same.
12. What would people be surprised to know about you?
I can rough and finish the plumbing in your house.
13. If we looked through your ipod, what would we find on it?
Elvis, old punk and lots of rockabilly.
14. What do you do in your down time?
I tend to spread myself thin. So I don’t know what downtime is. My downtime is spent on my side projects. Like SBXtheMovie and raising funds for that, training and turning wrenches. I guess my real downtime involves cooking and of course walking and spending time with my pooch, Sam.
This is a tough one. I have been to so many places. Russia for the snow and terrain. Norway for the scenery. New Zealand is one of those places where I have so many memories that it would be tough to leave that off the list. I love Austria. Its one of my favorite country’s and I have had so many good times there. Its also tough to leave Boston off the list.
16. Are you single, dating, or locked down? And what’s your ideal lady?
I am lucky enough that I have my ideal lady. Maria Ramberger on the Austrian Snowboard team. She’s brilliant, pretty, athletic, talented at everything she does, pushes me and works harder than anyone I know. I mean, the girl is an Olympian, she was top in her class in high school, getting her bachelors and masters in Law. Now she is getting her PhD. She has been doing this in coffee shops around the world while training every day, working on this film with me and balancing a professional snowboard career. I should stop bragging. She’ll read this and I’ll get in trouble.
17. Who’s your favorite person to room with when you’re on the road?
All of my teammates are awesome. I mean we all have our tendencies to do things that others may not like… or not do things that others may like us to do… like shower. The dude reading this know who he is. But to be 100% real, my favorite roommate is no roommate. We are a family and travel all year together. We get along great. But sometimes its nice just to be able to have some quiet time and chill out before bed.
18. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
Teleporting. Think about it. If you teleport really fast wherever you want its kind of like flying. Don’t need a chair lift. It’s green. Skip jet lag, get out of sticky situations. It would be perfect.
19. If you could trade places with anyone for a day who would it be and why?
I think it would be a Bruins player. I always wanted to know what it was like to be a pro hockey player. I still have dreams about playing ice hockey.
20. If you could be a pro in any other sport, what would it be?
I guess if I answer this question I am just being redundant.
Well, he’s a witty plumber from Boston who also just so happens to be a kick ass rider on the U.S Snowboard Team. No wonder he’s taken, said every girl reading this. But who cares? This guy has got some serious talent, and he’s definitely one to keep an eye on heading into Sochi next year. We’re not sure about you, but we know that we’re all for Team Cheever.
Who are we kidding? Of course you’re all on Team Cheever now. So if you’re itching for more check out teamcheever.net for all your latest Cheever news heading into this upcoming season.