The Designer Who Revolutionized Freestyle Skiing

Published: 14th November 2011
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Master ski designer Eric Bobrowicz has revolutionized the entire winter sports industry from his unassuming base in the resort of Serre Chevalier in the French Alps. Inventor of the pioneering Ride Doctor Pro Twin skis, Bobrowicz ("Bob" to his friends) has spent the last 15 years as head snowboard designer at Rossignol, France's top winter sports equipment company. Throughout his long association with Rossignol, Bob changed freestyle skiing forever in the late 1990s by developing the world's first twin tipped skis, called the 'Scratch'. After many fruitful years at Rossignol Bob strikes out on his own by creating a signature ski line available for sale at his exclusive online store 'Ride-Doctor.com'.

Ride-Doctor.com opened its doors in 2006 and is based in Bob's home base of Serre Chevalier. The store features a brand new, independently developed ski line. This is the culmination of many years of work for Bob, who grew into his role as a top ski designer over many years of intense study and hard graft.

Bob did not come to Serre Chevalier with the intention of being a master ski designer; arriving in 1983 as a kayak instructor while pursuing an engineering diploma at Grenoble University at the same time. After achieving his diploma, Bob began honing his skills as a ski designer at Lacroix Ski and Snowboard for a couple of years before moving on up in the world with a job at Rossignol in '89. It was here that Bob's natural talent for designing winter sports gear was allowed to flourish and he was made manager of the snowboard development team, a post he would hold for the next 15 years. Such is Bob's influence in the snowboarding world that his custom-made designs are popular with the top professional snowboarders in the world.

The engineers at Rossignol set out to create a new type of freestyle skis. The criteria for this new ski design were that they had to be large, fun, twin-tipped and had to appeal to both hardcore skiers as well as snowboarders. After many months of going nowhere Bob was asked to help out in the project, resulting in the legendary 'Scratch' skis - the rest, as they say, is history. After creating the Scratch skis Bob's next focus was snowboards. Bob says: "after that, my team and I did freeride skis for pro riders like Hugo Harrison and Manu Gaidet. They were high-performance, very wide skis that we then adapted to fit into our commercial range."

After playing a pivotal role in creating and designing over ten different skis and snow boards, Bob decided to part ways with Rossignol and go into business for himself. He chose Serre Chevalier as his base of operations because: "I have lived here for twenty years, while working in or around Grenoble... I have commuted nearly daily, and after crossing the Col du Lautaret 1,200 times, I know the road like the back of my hand. I've never thought of leaving Serre Chevalier, it is here that I feel at home. We benefit from a southern climate, living is easy and I can do all the sports I enjoy: skiing, mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, climbing... "

Bob's new skis, the Pro Twins, are freestyle skis designed around a wooden core. The Pro Twin skis are versatile enough to carve on the piste with style and also do a spot of backcountry skiing. Manufactured in limited edition quantities, Pro Twin skis come in three sizes (179, 173 and 167) and are destined to be another classic ski design from master ski maker Eric 'Bob' Bobrowicz.


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