Starting the season off with a strong win at the 2013 Australian Open in Telegraph Point, Australia, with a 208-foot jump over Russian competitor and friend Igor Morozov, who jumped 195 feet, Ryan Dodd continued to show strong performances during his month-long tournament stint in Australia. Dodd placed second, right behind men’s jump world-record holder Freddy Krueger at the Moomba Masters, the Mandurah World Cup stop and the Perth Night Jump. We called Mr. Dodd at his home in Palm Bay, Florida, to hear what he had to say about it, and the year ahead. — Geena Krueger
Was there some pain in finishing second at all of the last four pro events, right behind the Nightmare (Freddy Krueger)?
Yeah, you know, it’d always be nice to win, but you can’t base how you feel after your performance on winning or losing, ’cause it’s really out of our control. I could have a great performance and Freddy could have a jump of a lifetime and beat me. And with a guy like Freddy, it happens quite often.
Do you feel like you achieved some of your goals while being over in Australia?
I was happy with my plan. I would’ve liked to jump farther, so it’s hard to say. After last year, after getting back into the swing of things and winning a few big events, I definitely had hopes this year of winning a few more of the events. It’s early in the year, though, with challenging conditions. My goal was really to just learn something from each event and come home safe and healthy — just have a really safe and steady trip. As I spent time over there, I wanted to win more and more. Things just didn’t fall into place. At the end of the day, I achieved my goal and I feel like I got a good start to the year.
Regarding the placements at the last few tournaments, it’s been the same order: Krueger in first, you in second and Scot Ellis finishing third. You must feel like the young guy on the podium right now.
It feels amazing to be up on the podium with guys with that much experience. It just shows how valuable experience is and making sure you learn from your lessons. I competed in my first pro tournament when I was 17, so this is my 12th year skiing professionally against Scot and Freddy.
Hopefully, some of the young guys make it back this year.
Yeah, there are some young guys that definitely have the ability to jump far and give us a run for our money. I think Zach [Worden] and Tim [Bradstreet] are the two guys we’re talking about. I’m pretty sure they’re on the road to recovery, and I hope they get back out there this year and crack some big jumps. It’s fun to have people push you. It’d be boring if there wasn’t someone new knocking at the door.