With the online premiere of Degrees North only hours away, we decided to take a closer look at the man behind the big mountain legend that is Xavier De Le Rue: someone who is not only (most would agree) the most extreme snowboarder on the planet, but also a family man, an entrepreneur, an explorer and… a Hollywood stuntman!
1. Xavier worked as a stuntman on Point Break 2
When Hollywood needed someone to film and advise on big mountain action sequences for the upcoming Point Break movie sequel, they knew who to call. Besides shooting in the Alps and spending time in Hollywood advising on the edit, Xavier also gets a small cameo part in the movie. As Bodhi would say: 100 per cent pure adrenaline!
2. Xavier just got married
Last month Xavier married his “best riding partner” – Beanie. Beanie is a former pro freestyle skier from Scotland, and we imagine a strong pair of legs is essential for keeping up with Xavier – for their honeymoon, they toured the island of Sardinia by electric bicycle.
3. In Degrees North, Xavier pioneers paramotor access
Degrees North focuses on the team’s use of paramotors (powered paragliders) to explore and access terrain that is not practical by foot or heli. The original idea for using paramotors comes from Xavier himself – he first came up with the idea four years ago during the filming of Mission Antarctic. This led him to take up paragliding himself, eventually becoming a fully qualified paraglider pilot. This is how Xavier rolls: get interested in something, get good at it.
4. Xavier is a partner on a tech drone start-up
Xavier saw the potential of drones for filming action five years ago, and today he is an experienced drone pilot. But he believes the future lies with Hexo+ – automated drones that the user programs to follow their every move. To see Hexo+ in action, watch out for XV DIY, his next web series project, where he and Beanie will follow the snow without the usual crew, capturing the action instead with his Hexo+ drone camera.
5. Xavier comes from an extreme family
Xavier has a sister and three brothers – and they all snowboard. Paul-Henri won Olympic bronze in snowboard cross back in 2006, while Victor, 10 years younger, is currently one of the top French snowboard pros. Known for combining extreme big mountain lines with progressive freestyle tricks, little bro Victor just scored the ender in the new Transworld video, Origins.
6. Xavier has a racing heritage and is a contest killer
Ever wondered how Xavier charges lines so fast? Well, he started out as a racer before moving into snowboard cross… which he totally dominated for a few years, with multiple FIS world titles and X Games gold medals to his name.
But big mountain freeriding was always Xavier’s true passion, and besides his multiple films, video parts and Rider of the Year awards, it’s his three consecutive Freeride World Tour Champion titles that he’s most proud of.
Since we don't have any retro pics of his Boardercross World Champion titles, watch the Verbier Xtreme contest trilogy instead (see series embed above) – with footage of his four #VerbierXtreme title wins.
7. Big wave surfing? Watch this space…
Surfing is Xavier’s new passion, and big wave surfing is what he wants to get good at next. And with naturally good balance, total commitment and ability to laugh in the face of mortal danger… we’ve no doubt he’ll get there.
October 22–23 – 7pm UTC – available 48 hours only!