On episode one of Sponsored, host Mike Powell interviews Sean Pettit—a professional skier since age 12. The two discuss the sacrifices his mother made to ensure he and brother Callum could ski, their path as professional skiers, and the finer details of having an agent and sponsors.
On episode two of the “Sponsored” podcast, host Mike Powell interviews Wayne Wong—a legend of the hot dog skiing era. The two discuss skiing in the ’70s, the Wongbanger, and skiing’s role in creating the wet T-shirt contest. “The lifestyle, the energy in skiing… I think that the wet t-shirt contest became really synonymous with hot-dog skiing and skiing,” says Wong.
On this special episode of the “Sponsored” podcast, presented by Powder Radio, host Mike Powell interviews Andy Mahre—who, alongside Seth Morrison, was recently let go from longtime sponsor K2. This summer, Mahre also had a baby with his new wife, Shannon, and he speaks openly about the context of K2’s decision for both himself and the company. “The timing right now is not ideal,” says Mahre, “but it is what it is.”
K2 has a history of letting go of legendary skiers, including Glen Plake, not to mention Andy’s father and uncle, Steve and Phil Mahre, two of the best American ski racers of all time. Still, Andy Mahre handles the situation with grace and an understanding that, even if the brand felt like family, it’s still just business
Mahre also talks about skiing the national parks with POWDER’s Monumental project. He is also candid about fatherhood. “It makes you feel like a real man… you’re a real man doing cool stuff in the mountains, but create this new life and watch it grow and learn, it’s pretty amazing,” he says.
On this episode of the “Sponsored” podcast, presented by Powder Radio, host Mike Powell interviews Colby James West. West and Powell discuss West’s career arc. Now out of skiing, West is looking for acting and voice work in Los Angeles, while experimenting with drift car racing. “I’m going to figure out my own way to do it,” says West, “and I want to show how I can be unique and separate from that crowd.”
Sponsored, Episode 5: Chris Benchetler
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On this episode of the “Sponsored” podcast, presented by Powder Radio, host Mike Powell interviews Chris Benchetler, one of the most successful athletes in skiing, who is known for his style. The two discuss food, marriage, and tragedy. When Benchetler was 15, his dad died of cancer.
“He was from Hungary and he never taught us Hungarian because he escaped during the revolution. He would be in crazy pain, and scared and sick and start talking to me in Hungarian and there was just a lot to deal with that I didn’t quite know how,” says Benchetler. “He was scared of dying and [Mom] was scared that she wasn’t going to be able to take care of us financially. I had to grow up very quick. I dealt with a lot.”
Powell also discusses the keys to Benchetlers long and productive career.
“It’s a lot of who you know and the opportunities you can create for yourself and success comes from—you don’t get what you don’t ask for,” says Benchetler. “If you put yourself out there a lot of times you’ll surprise yourself.”