“I’m in Whistler for the first time. It’s pretty fun,” he said last week. “I’ve been here since December 24th with my coaches. It’s just about being here to do what I need to do without distractions.”
Hughes, who won the Montafon World Cup in December, has had a productive time in Canada ahead of the next round of events.
“At Montafon it was good to finally put another win the column and walk away with a W – that’s just a side piece at the moment and going towards my confidence into the Games.”
“It was good to have my whole team there and work on a few crucial points, crucial points.”
Feeling “healthy, strong and ready”, Hughes says he is looking at the courses in Bansko and Feldberg as an important lead up for different reasons.
“We’ve only had two actual world cup courses this year in Argentina and Montafon with a World Cup standard course. The other two have not really been up to scratch,” he said.
“Bansko is more of a sprint event, which isn’t really the crucial performance event for me and not a course that will be anything like we are going to race (in PyeongChang). It’s more to get the team altogether again and touching on finer details.”
“Feldberg will be good to go back after having a strong result there with a podium last year and it was good to work on passing last year after not being where I wanted to be at the start. It’s really cool to work on the passing in that event and good practice going towards the Olympics.”
“The course in PyeongChang will be 1.20minutes. That’s good for certain people."
The Sochi Olympian, who was just 18-years-old at the time has fond memories of the Opening Ceremony.
“It was really cool to walk out with my friends that I’d done training with and take in the whole Olympic experience,” he recalled. “And, really cool to facetime my parents during the Opening Ceremony. It was as much their opening ceremony as it was mine. They basically walked around with me.”
The Bansko Snowboard Cross World Cup will be contested this Saturday, January 27. Feldberg on February 4.
Currently leading the World Cup standings is Alex ‘Chumpy’ Pullin. Adam Lambert is 6th, Jarryd Hughes 10th and Cam Bolton 21st. Also at the starting gate are NSWIS riders Matt Thomas (28th), Josh Miller (32nd) and Adam Dickson (41st).