Name : John Bouteloup
Age : 56
Nationality : Jersey
Age you first played : 54
Position : Defence
Shirt Number : 9
What made you start playing and keeps you hooked : I didn’t put my first pair of skates on until I was about 48 after buying a second hand pair on Jersey Insight. Being a passionate skier I was looking for a way to get fit for the slopes. Skating had all the right attributes I wanted for ski training, working on core and quad strength combined with balance and skill.
I remember my first tentative skates along the front and Les Quennevais track, but as per my usual style each skate had to be at least a 5 mile journey otherwise it wasn’t a proper skate! As I got engrossed in the sport I then decided to seek advice on improvement, so without anyone around to help or learn from I relied on YouTube videos. A couple of years later I started teaching my daughter Avena to skate.
After teaching Avena her initial skating; she teaches me now! I took her up to Dsk8Skool, where I started to help out. Not long after, I met Damian who was starting an inline hockey club. He invited us along to play this new sport, so I took Avena for our first hockey session not really knowing what to expect, thinking that I would be there to support Avena from the sidelines.
As it turned out I was the one who got hooked, and I would never in a million years have guessed that I’d have ended up playing this amazing sport! I was hooked by the enthusiasm players had and the inclusiveness of anyone that turned up, also the willingness players had to talk and help you learn new skills. That was me started and the passion for learning kept me keen and wanting to come back.
On the court you’re quite competitive and have quite a strong skating style. Being that you started skating fairly recently, what other sports that you take part in do you feel helped develop that style : From a young age I have always been into sports . At school we played all the traditional sports and when I left school I had a fleeting glimpse at squash as my dad was a good racket player. A sporting life changing moment came for me in the form of kayaking, this was equally bizarre as taking up Hockey. It came about after I had helped build a kayak for my best friend, after which we both gave it a test run at Rozel harbour, I was hooked and a couple of weeks later I was out in my own kayak. My passion for kayaking came with the dedication to learn the skills and soon progressed until I was the best on the Island and along the way got myself a Guinness Book World Record for hand rolling a kayak in 1980.
I have competed in many other sports either at island or international level at varying degrees of success within the constraints of work and family these include water polo, waveski surfing (Masters World Champion 1994), cross country mountain biking (Island Games team member 2001) and triathlon. All of these sports require different skills, not really associated with hockey or even each other. I think that I’m just a naturally competitive person, who pushes myself to get better.
Best moment : In hockey / skating, nailing that move that I have been working towards is always a good moment.
In other sports – 2012 first solo kayaker around the Channel Islands 118 miles landing after 23.30hrs paddling!
Most embarrassing moment : Not being able to stop and crashing into a bollard – then having to explain the reason for my bruises to Hilly.
Favourite piece of kit : Definitely my skates! Alkali RPD Comp.