I, like I would imagine the majority of Wanaka and the New Zealand snow sport fraternity, was disappointed by a newspaper column last week dissing the New Zealand Winter Olympics team.
For those of you that missed it, the writer Dana Johannsen, said ‘‘it’s (the Games) more like watching a bunch of Kiwis on an expensive skiing holiday than a bunch of top athletes representing their nation at the highest level.’’
‘‘We knew medals were a long shot, but what we did expect was that they’d at least show a bit of grit and determination,’’ she said.
While some readers agreed with her, others touted the column online as ‘‘a piece of crap’’ and ‘‘rubbish’’. I have to agree. This sport writer confessed she had no idea about snowboarding or skiing. Get this woman on a slope and have her experience what it takes to get down a mountain, let alone take on a slopestyle course or half pipe, then have her repeat her comments there was no ‘‘grit or determination’’.
It was written as a Paul Henry-style shock jock and it worked. Within hours of going to print the writer was bombarded with negative feedback. What did she expect? How can you say five athletes finishing in the top 10 is not making New Zealand proud. Almost 3400 people have joined a Facebook page created in spite of the column. It goes to show you can’t go nationally dissing something you haven’t tried. Just because they make it look easy, doesn’t mean it is.