Whitehorse snowboarder Max Melvin-McNutt has had some ups and downs over the past three seasons.
In 2011 he became the first Yukoner ever named to the B.C. Provincial Freestyle Snowboard team. After a couple podium finishes in his first competition with the team he missed the rest of the season with a broken collarbone.
The same thing happened the next season with another collarbone break.
Then last summer the B.C. team dissolved due to a lack of funding.
But things appear to be turning around for the 20-year-old.
Melvin-McNutt is one of just nine boarders currently in line for Canada’s developmental slopestyle team, Snowboard Canada announced last week.
“I’m super happy,” said Melvin-McNutt. “I was really, really happy. Thrilled. All the hard work has paid off and I’m finally getting somewhere with it.”
This past season Melvin-McNutt did it alone, without a team, on the freestyle circuit.
Melvin-McNutt, who is now living full-time in Whistler, finished last season tied for 13th in Canada in slopestyle after some big results.
After missing the nationals the previous two years because of his collarbone, he rode to a fifth place finish in his first appearance at the Canadian Freestyle Snowboard Championships in March.
He then scooped up a third place at the Dew Tour AM Series, a Mountain Dew beverage sponsored event, at Sun Peaks Resort in Kamloops, B.C., the next week.
“The big one was the Dew Tour one. There were a lot better riders,” said Melvin-McNutt. “I consider it a higher contest (than nationals). I was a lot more stoked about that result.”
Melvin-McNutt also placed third in a Canadian Shield Snowboard Tour event at the start of the season.
Following the season he submitted an application for the developmental team along with a video of his big tricks to Canada Snowboard.
Melvin-McNutt’s biggest trick last season, he says, was a cab 1440 – that’s going off the jump switch and completing four full rotations.
“I just want to do really well in my contests next year,” said Melvin-McNutt. “I want to train really hard this summer, which I’m doing. I want to get in really good shape and get prepared physically and mentally for the next season.”
Final selection will be made after the team’s funding is determined by the Government of Canada’s Own The Podium program, Snowboard Canada told the News.
“I’d love to send out a message to the snowboard kids back home,” said Melvin-McNutt. “Telling them to stay focused on your goals. Anything is possible if they believe in themselves.”
Contact Tom Patrick at