Mitchey’s DIY Olympic bid


Queenstown skier X champ Mitchey Greig is a walking example of classic Kiwi No.8 wire mentality.

The 20-year-old has recently returned from a northern hemisphere “rampage” – where her DIY prowess was put to the test.

Greig travelled between the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan from November-March, competing on the world championship circuit and racing to qualify for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

With a current world-ranking of 27, she’s met “qualification stan­dards” for next year’s big event and is likely to be the New Zealand representative for skier X – a discipline where four skiers race against each other down a banked Super G slalom course.

The whirlwind trip certainly had its moments – like when she broke her thumb during her last race of the season, in Sweden.

But instead of taking herself to hospital, she decided to go partying instead.

“I got some kebab sticks and made a splint out of them and wrapped tape around my thumb.

“It actually worked pretty well.

“It went black over the next couple of days so when I did go to hospital, doctors said it was too swollen so they didn’t give me a cast. I ended up getting one when I came back to New Zealand.”

Greig started her trip by meeting up with members of the Jamaican ski team in Tahoe, US, to train – but there wasn’t any snow.

So the gang resorted to making some in their backyard using an air compressor and a hose.

“Then we built a pump track [consisting of raised humps and banked corners]. We built the start ramp and welded start gates, and used snow blowers to build [the humps] up in a pile.”

Then there was the time when she ran out of petrol on the French Alps and had to hitch-hike for three hours with an English couple to get to a petrol station and back.

Greig says she’s only resourceful “when you get made to be”.

“If the opportunity’s there just go for it and run with it.”

She plans to stay in Queenstown this winter to train for her next overseas stint.