Tips and tricks from Canada's top technical skier, Jean-Phillipe RoyJean-Phillipe Roy, of Rimouski, Quebec, is one of the few skiers on Canada's national team who races both Giant Slalom and Slalom on the World Cup. As the country's top technical skier, Roy is a wildcard threat anytime he clicks in.
Turn up the speed
The key to a winning run in World Cup GS racing is mastering the seemingly contrary elements of speed and control as you work through the turns. A good skier can actually gain speed out of a turn.
Splurge on tuning
Skis are expensive. (Roy skis the Rossignol Radical RX World Cup GS; $1,260) To make them last and perform like they're supposed to, you need to maintain them properly. "If you don't plan on taking care of your skis then it's not worth buying good equipment," Roy says. "There is no way in the world I can carve and ski well if my skis are not tuned perfectly." Just drying skis off after use will help prevent rusting and is a good first step. Better yet: get your skis waxed and your edges sharpened at a good ski shop.
"It's a misconception that the most direct line is the quickest way to the bottom," says Roy. "Mastering the line, knowing where to start and finish each turn, and linking those turns around the gates from beginning to end is what makes the difference between the first guy and the 60th guy in the World Cup circuit."