Bene stood on skis for the first time when he was just three. He developed a passion for skiing moguls and racing, which saw him land a place in the German national team by age 15.
At 16, Bene tried freeskiing and was an instant convert: “Freeskiing sets no boundaries to my creativity. I can totally express myself.”
The most important thing to Bene is enjoying his skiing, especially when fun and success go hand in hand, as demonstrated by his stunning fifth place at the Red Bull Linecatcher in 2010.
The freestyle event in the French Alps allowed him to meet up with the best of his sport and pit his skills against top freeskiiers like Candide Thovex, Sean Pettit and CR Johnson.
Bene is highly ambitious, but not getting injured is his top priority, a lesson learned the hard way after damage to his cruciate ligament sidelined him for two seasons early in his career. He is now very careful to calculate all risks while skiing. Of course, he still wants to win every contest that he rides and improve his style at the same time.
And he’s not willing to restrict himself to any one discipline: he’ll try everything from halfpipe, to backcountry to park, in fact anything on skiis. But he finds the most rewards in kicker jumping, jumping over Flat 5s, but always working on doubleflips – in both directions. Ever the perfectionist, he said: “If I do something, I do it right.”
To keep fit, Bene works out at the gym, on a trampoline and in summer, he can usually be found on a water jump. When not on skiis, he is still in motion: Mostly on a surf- or skateboard.
Despite having a full training schedule, he is still concentrating on his studies and goes to evening high school in Innsbruck, Austria. “It’s can be pretty tough to combine sport and school, but I know where I wanna go.” After completing high school, Bene wants to go to university, to study sport or journalism.
There’s no doubt Bene’s aiming for the top. Just listen to him talking about his role models Travis Pastrana and Travis Rice. “They develop their sport and manage to have fun at the same time. That’s the way it should be.“