Steamboat Springs Snowboarding coach Spencer Tamblyn, who was first hired as a coach at the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club in 1997, is leaving to take a position with the U.S. Snowboarding Team.
“I’ve been working toward this for the last 10 years,” Tamblyn said Wednesday before leaving Steamboat for a series of camps in California. “I’m hoping to bring the same level of energy and excitement to the U.S. team that I had with the athletes of the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club.”
Tamblyn officially agreed to the position with the U.S. Snowboarding team last week and will step into the slot previously held by Bud Keene. Keene was instrumental in getting the development team started and also was a personal coach for snowboarding legend Shaun White.
“Spencer’s going to have some big shoes to fill,” said Jon Casson, Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club’s program director. “I’m so excited for him.”
Keene will lead Project Gold Camps at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area in California during the next three weeks. During that time, he will work with Tamblyn to help develop top snowboarding prospects. The camps also will provide Tamblyn with an opportunity to train in his new position.
“For the last four or five years, I’ve been working with the U.S. Ski Team on a voluntary basis,” Tamblyn said. “This stuff isn’t totally new to me. I’ve wanted to position myself for this opportunity, and the timing is perfect.”
Tamblyn has coached riders at the Junior World Championships in Austria, Italy and Korea. He also has coached athletes at several World Cup events, as well as regional and national level camps like the ones in California.
Tamblyn plans to remain in Steamboat Springs and commute to the U.S. team’s base in Park City, Utah, when needed. He said leaving the Winter Sports Club wasn’t an easy decision but one that was supported by Casson, who is a longtime friend and his boss. Casson was the first person Tamblyn called after he got the job offer.
“Jon has encouraged me the entire time,” Tamblyn said. “I’m in debt to him for the support he has shown.”
Casson said he is thrilled that his friend has been given the opportunity he has worked for and that he expects him to find success at the next level.
“He’s been a close friend of mine for the last 10 years, and it’s been great to work with him,” Casson said. “Sure, we are going to miss him, but this is a great opportunity.”
Tamblyn was an athlete at the club from 1992 to 1994 and was hired as a coach in 1997. He left briefly in 2002 to pursue his own professional career, but he returned to the club in 2004 and focused on helping Steamboat advance its freestyle program.
Tamblyn said earning a position as a coach for the U.S. Snowboarding Team has been a goal for some time and that he feels the timing of this move couldn’t be any better. He said he feels prepared for the challenges and will continue to reach for his ultimate goal, which is to help young snowboarders reach the Olympics.
“I have to thank Rick (DeVos), Sarah (Floyd), the staff and all the other coaches who have supported me over the years,” Tamblyn said. “I could not have done this without their help.”