Skier Justine Dufour-Lapointe is a real-life comic-book hero
Moguls skier Justine Dufour-Lapointe‘s summer was basically an action comic where a snow-goggled hero conquers icy peaks in the blistering sunlight, then becomes a spectacled beauty who concocts perfect formulas in the shadows of a darkening metropolis.
“I have a lot of tiger inside of me,” says the 21-year-old, who decided the best way to practice her pre-race calm was to learn how to box.
“Boxing is a good compliment. You need to stay calm if you want to hit hard and hit well,” she says.
She has a wonderful sense for a moment. She won Olympic gold in Sochi then air guitar’d. The camera never catches her off-guard. She obsessed over her newest jump all summer, the cork 720, “I want to make it my own, make it…beautiful,” she says.
If the aesthetic is her passion and skiing is her expression, then winning well is her purpose.
“We’re perfectionists in the sport,” she says, including her sisters Chloé and Maxime. They did everything they could this summer. Snow camps in Australia, Whistler for water-ramps, training with Montreal fitness legend Paul Gagné, who works with professional athletes like NHL player Jonathan Drouin.
Justine recalls, “Sometimes they look lazy. Because they see us girls training harder than them or as hard as them.”
She read Andre Agassi’s ‘Open’, “We all can get inspired by other stories,” she says. Justine also put in 12 hour days with her sisters developing a cosmetics line with Quebec-retailer Jean Coutu, “We wanted to make it clean, make it good,” she stresses.
A great feature of the modern comic book genre is it rejects the fairy-tale story arc. Justine Dufour-Lapointe wrote her own story somewhat backwards, winning gold in her first Olympics with her sister Chloé second. A fairy-tale ending was just the start.
Justine has been runner-up for her sport’s Crystal Globe (the overall season title) four-straight years, although she was World Champion last season. “I’m more mature than I was before I’m way more aware about what’s going on around me,” she says. Vaulted to stardom, then tempered by the challenge of consistency.
“My ultimate goal for this year will be to win the Crystal Globe,” she says, noting that while her main rival American Hannah Kearney is now retired the other Dufour-Lapointes will be big challengers.
The story continues.