I'm not what you would call a "smart person" but it didn't take a rocket scientist to take notice in the 90's and early millennium the rise of two snowboard phenoms named Jeremy Jones. The first being Jeremy Jones from Utah who went on to become a urban shred legend and of course flaunt his right wing tendencies on the cover of Transworld. At least I think think it was Transworld. I've lost a good chunk of the past 10 years so i couldn't even begin to t ell you for sure. I just remember a patriotic looking blue man group guy with a crazy mohawk. Whatever floats your boat. But, point here is that's street or rail Jeremy. I want to talk about big mountain Jeremy.
I was intrigued but not shocked when I read that Jeremy was no longer working with Rossignol.
It's not shocking from the standpoint that Rossignol and other longstanding members of the shred universe are hurting financially. The harsh reality is that team riders are a cost center and not a profit center. Despite having a prolific line inside Rossignol snowboards being an amazing rider doesn't always sell product if you are constrained by a rough market image. That being said I've road JJ's Rossi boards at demos and won't lie ... I enjoyed them. So whatever the story is on that front I'm unsure but I wasn't expecting him to go the route of starting his own brand: Jones Snowboards. Now I'm likely the last person to the table but it's worth talking about. Why? Well, glad you asked. It's pretty simple concept: this is pretty fucking punk rock.
I'm going to remove the potential economic uphill battle Jones snowboards may have and take a quick trip back down memory lane. Ski resorts used to not allow snowboarding, companies sprouted out of garages and if you snowboarded and a another kid snowboarded you were automatically kin. Snowboarding was about doing what we wanted to do. Not what conventional wisdom told us was the right thing. Starting a freeride board company in today's Olympic, X Game hyper fueled slopestyle, halfpipe and jibbin bonanza is just shy of crazy. But, take one of the best free riders, a guy who when I watch ride I think of Craig Kelly and the effortless flow that comes with the relentless pursuit of new lines, it becomes less crazy. Rise or fall for Jones snowboards giving it a shot is a giant leap where most are to chicken shit to even try. My hope is this, Jones is successful and ushers in a new generation of all terrain shredders. With Travis Rice driving next level contest in Jackson Hole, backcountry freestyle pioneers like Jamie Lynn having a resurgence by doing collabs with Vans, Jones snowboards could be another clue in the hard to decipher freeride code that is snowboard marketing and presence.
So I'm not shocked, I'm not intrigued, nope ... I'm hopeful. Seeing somebody take a chance, attach his name to brand is like painting a big bullseye on your back. But one could venture that having the cajones of big mountain Jeremy would make you a little less risk adverse. So what's the moral of a this story? Jeremy will be crushing it on a board that bears his name but is his name. South of the North wishes him a big high five best of luck and for all of you out there to scared to do something, take a chance.