Catching Up With Russ Henshaw

Catching Up With Russ Henshaw

Aussie pro Russ Henshaw has had a banner year. He’s an X Games and Winter Dew Tour slopestyle regular. He wins big airs. He does doubles, both ways. He films for MSP. He slays JOSS edits. He lives on yachts. Russ makes use of his downtime to chat with Freeskier.com about his season, Stockholm and Vegemite.

Freeskier: Hello Russell. Where are you currently?
Russ Henshaw: Hey man, I’m good, I’m just in Steven’s Pass waiting for weather to clear for an MSP shoot.

FS: You’re at a film shoot? Do you think this is your busiest year so far?
RH: Yeah, trying to get some shots for MSP’s new film. Um, last year was pretty hectic. But I think this year I stepped it up a notch with how busy I have been. Lots and lots of travel, heaps of competitions and a couple of film shoots already.

FS: Speaking of heaps of comps, you slayed it pretty hard. What’s your secret? Steroids or something?
RH: The secret to success, believe it or not, is Vegemite on toast. Obviously, I don’t have it at my disposal while I’m traveling but before I head north I eat a shitload of it.

FS: Ah, so Vegemite is the secret to rightside doubles? I think a few kids on Newschoolers fainted from that trick in your JOSS edit.
RH: Yes, Vegemite, for sure. You really think so? I’m not sure about fainting but I hope people were stoked on it.

FS: I’m sure people were stoked on it. Were you affected by the Iceland Volcano like countless other skiers leaving JOSS?
RH: Yeah, I was. I was meant to leave the day after JOSS Awards but because of the bloody volcano I was stuck in Stockholm for an extra week. Which wasn’t a bad thing but I wish I had of been filming.

FS: Was it nice to have some downtime though? Did you hang out on yachts and with models like Jon Olsson does in his free time?
RH: Yeah, it was sick fun. Went shopping and partied a bit so that was good. And no, I didn’t do that, I dont think I would want to [laughs]. Although, I was on a yacht, my girlfriend Laura, booked our accomodation on a yacht hotel. It was a pretty cool experience.

FS: What’s the best thing about a yacht?
RH: I can change the words around to the song ‘I’m on a boat’ and sing all day.

FS: Very nice. What are your plans after this MSP shoot at Steven’s?
RH: I head to Keystone for a park shoot and then believe it or not I’m going up to Alaska for a park shoot. Kinda bummed that the first time I go to Alaska is for park and not big mountain.

FS: At least you can still hang out with bears up there.
RH: There’s bears? They scare me.

FS: What’s scarier, bears or crocodiles? They have those in Australia right?
RH: Probably bears because there aren’t any crocs near where I live.

FS: Speaking of Oz, are you going to get some nice downtime at home this year? Or are you forever stuck in North America trying to get shots to appease your sponsors?
RH: Well, i’ll hopefully be home in about three weeks and then i’ll have a bit of downtime before heading to NZ and then city big airs. Kind of doesn’t stop for me.

FS: The side of the sport kids don’t see, right? If you could compare yourself to a misunderstood rapper, who would it be?
RH: Yeah, exactly. It’s actually pretty hard work but at the same time super fun, and rewarding. As far as the rappers go I have no idea because I listen to classical music.

FS: Then who would be your Classical Musician Doppleganger?
RH: [laughs] I actually dont even listen to classical and I have no idea who I would compare myself to. Next question.

FS: Have you got some new tricks planned for the city big airs next fall?
RH: Not yet but hopefully I can work on some stuff so I can do well.

FS: How’s your halfpipe game coming along? That’s where all the money is.
RH: Ha, good joke. I have actually been working on my straight air japans, still cant get the grab though.

FS: That’s a toughie for sure. If you weren’t being a PRO skier, what would you be doing? Saving lives as a doctor? Space walking as an Astronaut? Designing great buildings as an architect?
RH: Nah, I would probably be doing something to do with skating. I do a bunch of that when Im home, or something to do with surfing or the beach.

FS: Good answer. Ok, last question: Who would win in a fight, your JOSS filmer Jake Largess, or pipe lady Dania Assaly?
RH: Probably Dania, Jake is a bitch and has no muscle.

Russ’ self portrait in Steven’s Pass.

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