ANDREW BURNS INTERVIEW | AGAINST ALL ODDS
By Rob Lemay | Photos [o] Ben Girardi Andrew Burns. That name goes hand in hand within Canadian snowboarding. It’s one that...
Spencer Whiting, aka Spenny, aka Gimbal God. The man behind a million successful straight air’s has been spending time in Whisler filming Stale Sandbech and making magic happen for Oakley Week. We caught up with the follow cam king as he just dropped another instant classic video, Heli Hogs, that continues to push what’s possible on the screen while keeping style in the frame.
So, you and Stale are here in Whistler for Oakley Week. How long have you been posted up for?
We’ve been here since February 11th.
What’d you guys do for Valentines day?
We chilled, I made a romantic dinner. No [laughing]. We just posted up, my chicks at home, F
You and Stale have spent copious amounts of time together in the last
Yeah, I’m going to say we’re probably on the 200+ days a year grind.
Damn! Are you at the point where you’re finishing each other’s sentences or are you kind of sick of each other?
Yeah, we’ve had a rough patch these last few weeks [laughing] we’ve been getting at each other but we’re almost cranking on our two year anniversary which is probably sometime in March.
You don’t have it marked on the calendar?
No, I’m not that good of a boyfriend.
What are you going to get him?
I should get him a fucking bag of coal or something.
More like, what should he be getting you?
A fucking bag of gold?! I don’t know. [laughing] I haven’t slept in two years.
That sounds like a fair trade. You don’t spend much time in Canada do you?
No, I would love to base out of Whistler, do exactly what Sage (Kotsenberg) is doing and just
That’ll be amazing. Is there any culture shock coming to Canada?
I’ve never taken as many fan photos in my entire life than in Whistler. It’s crazy how many people have come up to Stale and
Because fans were buying them for you.
You can’t say no. If you’re gonna buy me a shot, I’ll take it. If I
You must pay attention to the views and likes, but when you meet someone in life that recognizes you and appreciates the work and the time you put in to inspire and entertain them, is that a trip?
It’s insane because I’m not a pro snowboarder, I was the idiot local at Mammoth. Stale is used to it, he’s almost a decade and a half in the industry as a professional. It’s kind of a trip to me because I’m more of the behind the camera guy, not the
You were snowboarding before, making it happen. And now you’ve basically made a career out of straight airing jumps. Is that a trip?
I’m probably the luckiest professional snowboarder in the world. I don’t have to do more than a 180◦ and I’m chilling. I actually don’t even have to do a 180◦ and I’m chilling.
But who works harder? You or the riders?
I think it’s just different schedules. I’ll say they work harder when we’re filming, I work harder when they’re sleeping. But they have to sleep to do the tricks and stuff, I can be half awake when we’re jumping [laughing]
They have to be more on it than you, is what you’re saying?
Yeah. I mean I got to be on it, I can’t hit them, but they’re pretty good.
So what’s the future of this relationship between the two of you? Is some time apart in the cards or is it just getting stronger?
We got some cool projects planned out. Our two-year deal that we’ve been working on, that we haven’t publicized at all, we’ll probably drop the first tease of it next week. That comes out after the US Open. We have one more clip that we’re hopefully going to get tomorrow.
Is this some shit that people haven’t seen before?
Yeah, this is a whole new … it’s the reason he hired me was for this project in the first place. It was supposed to come out new years 2018, then it was going to come out after the Olympics, then we were like “It needs to be way better”. Now it’s done we just have one last shot and we’re going to get it tomorrow.
How do you progress what you’re doing?
Backcountry is the next foray.
Do you feel personally responsible for making sure style is kept in snowboarding? Your video makes people really want to really pay attention to how the tricks are done.
I will be straight up I hate triple corks, quad corks in where the status of snowboard judging is at is so lame to me. And the structure of your standard slope event. I think a mandatory under 900 should be a part of every contest. Otherwise, it’s just a fucking spin game. I think the podium would be the same with a little mix-up but it’d be more relatable for the viewer. It’s way easier to relate to Torgeir’s Switch Back 5 Method, than Takeru’s (Otsuka) Front Triple 18.
Snowboarders want to see something they can relate to.
Are we breeding robots or snowboarders? I’d way rather see a Cab 5. Really freaking controlled and perfect… Always hold your grab man.