Breakpoints

No Retina
Retina
XS Screen (480px)
SM+ Screen
SM Screen (768px)
SM- Screen
MD+ Screen
MD Screen (992px)
MD- Screen
LG+ Screen
LG Screen (1200px)
LG- Screen
XL+ Screen (1600px)
Countdown to the 2022 Olympic Winter Games

U.S. Ski Team Alumna Ludlow Launches Second Children’s Book, ‘Goodnight Chairlift’

By Megan Harrod
June, 22 2021
Goodnight Chairlift

On the tail of her wildly successful children’s book A-B-Skis, Olympic skier Libby Ludlow is launching a Kickstarter for her follow-up book, Goodnight Chairlift. The perfect bedtime story for young skiers, Goodnight Chairlift is a playful journey across a ski area as the sun sets on an epic day. Readers wish ‘goodnight’ to the chairlift, the terrain park, and more. After all, everything at the ski area must go to sleep at night—except, of course, the snowcats. Internationally known illustrator and Park City ski instructor Nathan Jarvis, who also illustrated A-B-Skis, brings various ski area icons to life through his beautiful illustrations, silly scenes, and hidden items to search and find.

Goodnight Chairlift

Goodnight Chairlift is leveled-up from A-B-Skis, Ludlow explains, “It will appeal to more advanced readers and mountain-goers because it features quirky insider terminology, but the book is still inclusive of all levels through its fun glossary in the back.” She also points out that she didn’t write Goodnight Chairlift just for skiers, “my snowboarder friends will enjoy the book just as much as skiers.”

Considering A-B-Skis won four book awards in 2020 and has sold over 5,000 copies, Libby’s standards for this follow-up project are anything but low, “A-B-Skis was so well- received, it’s not an easy act to follow.” But despite the pressure, Ludlow couldn’t be happier to bring a second book to market. She’s been through the entire process before—from the crowdfunding campaign to printing the book overseas. “Self-publishing isn’t easy, but I know what it takes to be successful. I can’t wait for Goodnight Chairlift to make it into kids’ bedtime story rotation. I know they’ll love it just as much, if not more, than A-B-Skis.”

The Kickstarter will run for thirty days, during which people can pre-order discounted and signed copies of the book. Orders are scheduled to be delivered to backers just in time for the ski season in early December 2021. Access to the Kickstarter campaign can be found at: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/abskis/goodnight-chairlift.

 

Learn more about Goodnight Chairlift on Kickstarter

––

Libby Ludlow is a former 10-year member of the U.S. Alpine Ski Team, a 2006 Olympian, mother of two little skiers, and lifelong writer. Nathan Jarvis is a PSIA certified children’s specialist ski instructor whose illustrations have appeared in Highlights Magazine and scores of children’s books. Together, Libby and Nathan published A-B-Skis: An alphabet book about the magical world of skiing in 2019. The book won four book awards in 2020, including Best Book in the American Book Fest. A-B-Skis is available online on Amazon and sold at shops and ski resorts across the country. Goodnight Chairlift: A bedtime story for little rippers by the creators of A-B- Skis, is Nathan and Libby’s second collaboration. Goodnight Chairlift was written for readers age 4-10 years old.

Flinn Named Alpine Head Men's Development Coach

By Megan Harrod
June, 22 2021
Graham Flinn Head Men's Development Coach
Graham Flinn, pictured here on the job at Official Training Site Timberline Lodge, has been named the new head men's alpine development coach.

In addition to the recent staffing changes, the U.S. Alpine Ski Team has announced that Graham Flinn has been named the new head men's development coach, and has already kicked off his work on the mountain at Official Training Site Timberline Lodge and Ski Area. 

Flinn rejoins U.S. Ski & Snowboard with a strong background from both working at the club and the U.S. Ski Team levels over the last ten years. "During his prior work with the USST’s Development Team, Graham was instrumental in our men’s program winning four medals at the World Junior Championships, as well as helping to advance many individual athletes to the upper levels of the National Team," said Alpine Development Director Chip Knight. 

Flinn will oversee all of men's development, a role formerly occupied by 19-year U.S. Ski & Snowboard veteran Sasha Rearick. Most recently, Flinn has been leading the FIS program at Rowmark Ski Academy, where he recently earned Intermountain Division's Coach of the Year honors. While at Rowmark, Flinn also coached newly-named U.S. Ski team development team athlete Mary Bocock, whose dream to make the national team has come true. 

Flinn lives close to the Center of Excellence in Park City, Utah, and his official start date was June 14.

 

Gold, Silver Awards Honor Those Who Have Given Back To Sport

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
June, 21 2021
Hailey and Sadie
Peers of retiring national team member Sadie Maubet Bjornsen (right) presented her successful nomination for the Buddy Werner Award, honoring the true spirit of sportsmanship she exhibited throughout her career. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard continued its annual awards presentations recognizing competition officials, volunteers, and event organizers for their extraordinary contribution to the success of the organization. The gold and silver-level awards, recognizing volunteers and organizations around the country for their service to athletes in a variety of categories, follow the acknowledgment of athletes, coaches, and clubs of the year.

PAUL BACON AWARD
(event organization)

Aspen Organizing Committee

The Aspen Organizing Committee, notably Aspen Skiing Company and Aspen Ski & Snowboard Club, was honored with U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Paul Bacon Award for event organization. The Aspen organizers were lauded for their dedication in a pandemic season for stepping in to host the FIS Freeski & Snowboard World Championships, Land Rover U. S. Grand Prix and U.S. Alpine Championships at short notice. 

The Paul Bacon Award, which was first awarded in 1969, is given annually to recognize contributions in event organization, which is a vital component of an athletic organization. It is named in honor of Paul Bacon, a New England native working in Vail, Colo., who in 1963 crafted one of the sport’s first operational manuals for event organization. Shortly thereafter, Bacon was tragically killed in a summer construction accident.

While there were no major events scheduled in Aspen to start the year, that all changed with the pandemic. Following the cancelation of the 2021 FIS Snowboard & Freeski World Championships in China, Aspen stepped in to run the event at its X-Games venue with halfpipe, slopestyle, and big air. In addition, Aspen provided a platform for the U. S. Grand Prix event following the World Championships.

In addition, with the cancelation of the U.S. Alpine Championships in New England due to pandemic protocols, Aspen once again stepped in to hold the event at Aspen Highlands.

The dedication of longstanding event partners in Aspen provided a platform to ensure that these top international and domestic championship events were able to be held this past season, with a strong partnership between the resort and the local club. The events were produced at the highest level and managed safely for participants and host organizers.


JOHN J. CLAIR AWARD
(service to national teams)

Jeff Byrne, Lake Placid, N.Y.

Jeff Byrne, who recently retired as vice president of events for the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) in Lake Placid, N.Y., was honored with U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s John Clair Award for a lifetime of service that benefited national teams. The award is named in honor of John J. Clair of the Long Island Ski Club, who was an active supporter of the U.S. Ski Team in the 1950s and ‘60s, being inducted into the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame in 1970.

In his long tenure with ORDA, Byrne helped elevate the level of skiing in America through his pursuit of national and international events in Lake Placid. He remained active within sport at the national and international levels during his entire career.


BUD & MARY LITTLE AWARD
(service to USOPC or FIS)

Melinda Roalstad, Cedaredge, Colo.

Former U.S. Ski & Snowboard medical director Melinda Roalstad was recognized for her service to athlete safety internationally with the Bud & Mary Little Award for service to the International Ski Federation. The award memorializes longtime FIS vice president Bud Little.

Today, athlete safety and medical support is an integral part of our organization and major events around the world. But it wasn’t always that way. As secretary of the FIS Medical Committee in the ‘00s, her influence and direct work led to numerous upgrades to athlete safety that are still in place today.

Roalstad was the principal writer for the first FIS concussion protocol, created a pivotal update to the FIS Medical Guide, successfully lobbied the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee to use U.S. Ski & Snowboard doctors at the Olympics, pioneered FIS Emergency Action Plans that are now required of all organizers and pushed to put a FIS medical director on the organizing committee of each World Championship.

Roalstad was the first full-time medical director of the U.S. Ski Association, serving until 2007. Since her retirement, she has worked in private concussion management.


J. LELAND SOSMAN AWARD
(service to physician’s pool)
Dr. David Kuppersmith, Vail, Colo.

Dr. David Kuppersmith, an internist with The Steadman Clinic, was recognized with the J. Leland Sosman Award for his service to the volunteer physician’s pool. This past year Dr. Kuppersmith took an enhanced role in managing the health and wellness of athletes during the pandemic.

The J. Leland Sosman Award is presented annually in recognition of service to the U.S. Ski & Snowboard volunteer physician’s pool. It is named in honor of Dr. Sosman, affectionately known as ‘Sos,’ who was a volunteer leader and competition official known for his energy, persistence, and passion for U.S. Ski & Snowboard sports. This award recognizes an individual from the medical community who best exemplifies these traits.

Dr. Kuppersmith played a central role in U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s COVID-19 medical panel that met weekly throughout the season. It reviewed the ever-evolving best practices to keep athletes, staff, and officials safe and healthy, as well as providing personal telehealth calls with athletes from every corner of the world. In his hometown of Vail, he engaged to provide personal attention to regional athletes to ensure they had access to testing and vaccinations. His work was lauded by U.S. Ski & Snowboard as a key element in the team’s ability to continue competition and training safely in the past year.


TEAM ATHLETES GIVING BACK
(national team athletes supporting causes)
Nicola Rountree-Williams, Tryon, N.C.

U.S. Alpine Ski Team member Nicola Rountree-Williams was awarded the Team Athletes Giving Back award, which she will share with the nonprofit cause she supports, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network. The Team Athletes Giving Back award is presented annually to a national team athlete to recognize their advocacy for outside causes. U.S. Ski & Snowboard will present a $5,000 donation to the Autistic Self Advocacy Network in her name.

The cause is important personally to Rountree-Williams, who was diagnosed with autism. Despite that, she has parlayed her passion for ski racing into a burgeoning career as a young ski racer. Growing up in North Carolina, she fell in love with racing through NASTAR during a family trip to Aspen. She kept at it and eventually found her way to Ski & Snowboard Club Vail and the Loveland Ski Club. In her young career, she has already competed in two Junior World Championships and the 2020 Youth Olympic Games. She is presently second in the world in her age class.

“It means a lot to me to have our voices out there on autism,” she said. “And I would love to donate this money to ASAN."


BUDDY WERNER AWARD
(sportsmanship)

Sadie Maubet Bjornsen, Winthrop, Wash.

Peers of retiring national team member Sadie Maubet Bjornsen presented her successful nomination for the Buddy Werner Award, honoring the true spirit of sportsmanship she exhibited throughout her career. The award is named in honor of the great Buddy Werner, a great downhill ski racer from the 1950s and ‘60s who was known for his great caring attitude towards his teammates.

Maubet Bjornsen was well known for her interaction with teammates, always putting them above herself. In particular, she served as a respected mentor for young athletes just making their way onto the national team, acclaimed by her teammates for giving more than she receives.

She recently retired after a career that took her to six World Championships and two Olympics. She was a mainstay of what was arguably the best U.S. women’s team in history, where she played a vital role as both an athlete herself and as a key teammate. In addition to a team sprint bronze medal from the 2017 World Championships, she earned 17 World Cup or stage World Cup podiums - including five with her colleagues in team events.


WEST FAMILY CUP
(event officials)

Jim Tervo, Houghton, Mich.

One of the nation’s longest-serving volunteer competition officials, Jim Tervo was honored for his lifetime of service to the cross country skiing community with the West Family Cup. Named in memory of noted volunteer Fraser West and his wife Teddy, the West Family Cup is presented to recognize a long-serving official.

Tervo has been the soul of the Michigan Tech University organizing committee in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula for decades. He was recognized for his being a loyal, reliable, and selflessly compassionate official and nordic community member. He is known for his sound decision-making on behalf of athletes, his vast background of knowledge, and his pep talks on the starting line about the importance of sportsmanship and fair play.

In his career, he has served in myriad roles including race official, chief of competition, event organizer and technical delegate. He has led the organizing committee for the U.S. Cross Country Ski Championships five times in the last 15 years.


WESTHAVEN AWARD
(service as technical delegate)

Karen Ghent, Vail, Colo.

Former U.S. Ski Team athlete Karen Ghent has taken her knowledge and crafted it into a long career both as a coach and a competition official. Her peers acknowledged her with the gold-level Westhaven Award for longtime service as a technical delegate.

The Westhaven Award is presented annually in memory of longtime TD Fraser West. It dates back to 1991.

Her career in sport spans over four decades. After retirement, she continued in the sport as a coach and program administrator, becoming one of the few women to hold the title of alpine director for a major club - serving at Ski & Snowboard Club Vail. While in that role she personally earned both Alpine Domestic Coach of the Year honors, as well as the overall Development Coach of the Year. She also led her Alpine Club of the Year honors in 2010, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

After retiring from those professional roles, she became a FIS technical delegate, filling myriad assignments at all levels of competition. This past year, Ghent took on a vital leadership role as the head of the Health of Sport Task Force, looking at ways to help reform alpine ski racing to attract new participants.


RUSSELL WILDER AWARD
(service to youth)

Gordon Lange, Park City, Utah

Gordon Lange, retiring cross country coach of Park City Ski & Snowboard, was recognized with the Russell Wilder Award for his service to youth. The award is the second oldest from U.S. Ski & Snowboard, dating back to 1955. 

Lange has been a legendary and inspirational leader through a career that spanned 43 years of coaching at the local, regional, national, international, and collegiate levels. In the early part of his career, he coached the Wyoming Cowboys to an NCAA skiing title. He went on to coach the U.S. Ski Team at three Olympics before settling in for a long career at the club level.

His work touched on every level of the sport, gaining a high level of respect from his athletes and fellow coaches. His contribution beyond his club across the division has helped lead the Intermountain Division to become one of the strongest in the country. In recent years, athletes from his program have had increasing impact in the sport internationally, including Rosie Brennan, who led the FIS World Cup this past season, and NCAA ski champion Sydney Palmer-Leger.

Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund Relaunches to Provide Need-Based Athlete Grants

By Megan Harrod
June, 16 2021
Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund Relaunch

Ahead of this Father’s Day, U.S. Ski & Snowboard, in collaboration with the Shiffrin family, is honored to announce that the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund (JSARF) will live on as a newly established need-based, direct-to-athlete funding source for U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes. 

The JSARF was created to honor Jeff Shiffrin’s life and legacy in collaboration with the Shiffrin family and a group of generous donors (six families). The Fund, which successfully raised more than $3,000,000, contributed to U.S. Ski & Snowboard in sustaining its training and competition schedule as many funding sources were impacted due to COVID-19. This translated into one of the most successful seasons in history, with 103 podiums, including 27 victories, across all sports which is a direct result of consistent funding for all athletic programs.

Additionally, as a result of the success of the JSARF and support from the Shelby Cullom Davis Charitable Fund, the organization was able to make a one-time COVID-19 hardship payment of $1,300 to every named 2020-21 national team athlete. This means athletes, like mogul skier Tess Johnson, are able to focus on their 2022 Olympic journey in being able to cover expenses outside of team funding. Johnson was able to use the one-time payment from the initial JSARF towards her summer lodging expenses in Park City, Utah, as she trains at the USANA Center of Excellence and the Spence Eccles Olympic Freestyle Pool at Official Training Site Utah Olympic Park (UOP). 

“Every athlete named to the 2020-21 U.S. Ski Team received a COVID-19 payment through the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund because you are on our team,” said Johnson of the many generous supporters of U.S. Ski & Snowboard. “I can pay rent in Park City to train at the COE and UOP because you are on our team. And I can realize my dreams of winning the Olympics and the World Cup Overall Globe because you are on our team. Seven years ago, I wouldn’t have believed that this concept of team would play a star role in my success as an individual athlete, and I’m just so thankful to have the many people who make up U.S. Ski & Snowboard fulfilling that role.”

A goal of $250,000 with every dollar being matched by a generous anonymous donor up to $125,000 has been set for the re-launch of the campaign, with $250,000 in grants slated to be distributed to athletes based on a combination of both need and merit. Athletes can use the funds toward any cost related to their sports career, including but not limited to living expenses, medical expenses, rehabilitation from injury, education, and professional certifications. The application process will be announced early in 2022, and applications will be assessed by a grant review committee composed of donors, Board of Trustees members, and alumni athletes. Grants for this round of funding will be distributed in the spring of 2022. A new round of fundraising will also start in the spring of 2022, immediately after this year’s grants are awarded, for distribution in the spring of 2023.

Davis U.S. Cross Country Ski Team athlete Hannah Halvorsen, a key member of the bronze medal-winning relay team from the 2017 Junior World Championship team who suffered from severe injuries when she was hit by a car in 2019, is another athlete who has benefited from grants, sponsorship, and donor funding. As a development team athlete, Halvorsen covers her own travel and lodging costs and depends on grants much like those that will come from the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund to enable her to focus on the next level of competition and establish herself at the World Cup level. Grants like this are difference-makers for up-and-coming athletes like Halvorsen who are on the cusp of breaking through.  

Moving forward, the JSARF will help fill financial gaps like Johnson’s and Halvorsen’s, so athletes are able to shift focus from personal financial concerns to competition as they aim to achieve their goals and find success on the world stage. Unlike many of the nations U.S. Ski & Snowboard competes against, American Olympic athletes do not receive any direct government funding. 

“The original Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund campaign was instrumental in helping us to support and sustain athlete and team funding and programs over the last year due to the global pandemic,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw. 

“This newly-launched, need-based, direct-to-athlete funding campaign is a significant value-add for our athletes as they set out to achieve success at the highest level of our sports,” Shaw added. “We are grateful to Eileen, Taylor, and Mikaela for their dedication to establishing this ongoing Fund, their commitment to athletes across all sports, and their desire to honor Jeff’s legacy.”  

Two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin, who has worked tirelessly—along with her mother Eileen and brother Taylor—to establish the Fund, expressed her gratitude to donors, supporters, and teammates for their involvement to #keeptheflamealive over the past year. 

“On behalf of my family, I want to thank those who have already donated to the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund, and those of you who will consider getting involved in this ongoing campaign,” Shiffrin said. “I also want to thank my teammates and the fans who shared their stories of resilience—your stories have offered endless inspiration and have kept me going.”

“My dad was passionate about elite sport and there’s nothing he loved more than watching athletes overcome challenges and compete at the top of their game,” she added. “Our hope is that, in a few years’ time, we are able to create an endowment in my dad’s name, so his legacy will live on and he will continue to contribute to the ongoing pursuit of excellence for all athletes across all sports.” 

For more information about the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund and to donate, visit keeptheflamealive.org.

DONATE

Watch Mikaela Shiffrin and Patrick Dempsey discuss The Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund, grief, U.S. Ski & Snowboard athlete success this past season, and more on Instagram below. 

World Cup Ski Racing Returns to Killington Resort Through 2022

By Megan Harrod
June, 10 2021
Mikaela Shiffrin Killington
Vermont’s Killington Resort and U.S. Ski & Snowboard, today announced a two-year agreement for Killington Resort to host the women’s FIS Alpine Ski World Cup. U.S. Alpine Ski Team superstar Mikaela Shiffrin, pictured here after the giant slalom in 2019, has emerged victorious in slalom each of the last four years at Killington.

KILLINGTON, Vt. (June 10, 2021) – Vermont’s Killington Resort, the largest ski and snowboard resort in Eastern North America and part of POWDR, and U.S. Ski & Snowboard, the National Governing Body (NGB) of Olympic ski and snowboard sports in the United States, today announced a two-year agreement for Killington Resort to host the women’s FIS Alpine Ski World Cup. 

Killington’s place on the 2021 Alpine World Cup calendar has been confirmed by the International Ski Federation (FIS). HomeLight, the real estate technology platform transforming how people buy and sell homes, will be the title sponsor for the next women’s World Cup at Killington. The HomeLight Killington Cup will take place over Thanksgiving weekend November 27-28, 2021. 

As with the previous four years of the World Cup, the 2021 and 2022 races at Killington will be broadcast worldwide to more than 60 nations, along with national broadcast coverage across the United States by the networks of NBC. The event has drawn an increasing number of spectators who converge on Killington each year to cheer on ski racers from around the world. As one of the top three events on the Women’s FIS World Cup tour with spectators peaking at 39,000 in 2018, the event is anticipated to bring millions of dollars in economic impact to the state of Vermont.

Bringing FIS Alpine World Cup racing back to Killington Resort for the 2021/22 Olympic season is an incredible opportunity for the resort and the surrounding community. More than just world-class racing and a great music line-up, spectators will enjoy a full weekend of festivities,” says Mike Solimano, president and general manager of Killington Resort and Pico Mountain. “Come fall, we’ll utilize every opportunity to build a world-class race venue on Superstar with Killington’s state-of-the-art snowmaking system – positioning us to offer the longest season in the East.”

The World Cup includes women’s giant slalom and slalom races, attracting athletes such as U.S. Alpine Ski Team superstar and two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin, who has emerged victorious in slalom each of the last four years at Killington. Additionally, fans can get excited to witness 2021 overall World Cup winner Petra Vlhova from Slovakia, slalom globe winner Katharina Liensberger of Austria, and giant slalom globe winner Marta Bassino of Italy compete for a podium finish. 

"The HomeLight Killington Cup has become a fan and athlete favorite over the last four years. It’s a true celebration of ski racing excellence and the international race community, inspiring the next generation,” says Eric Webster, Senior Director of Events at U.S. Ski & Snowboard. “Since bringing World Cup ski racing back to New England, Killington Resort and Vermont has set a new precedent for ski racing internationally, boasting the largest World Cup crowd for women on the entire circuit. We’re thrilled to see the commitment and passion Killington and POWDR have for ski racing continue, especially as we head into an Olympic qualification year." 

“Everything we do at HomeLight is focused on helping the best people and teams in real estate win and support their clients and the communities they call home,” said John Van Slyke, III, Vice President of Marketing at HomeLight. “We’re thrilled to partner with U.S. Ski & Snowboard and Killington Resort to once again bring the top athletes in the world to Killington.” 

U.S. Ski & Snowboard has had a long relationship with POWDR producing World Cup and Grand Prix events at POWDR resorts including Copper Mountain, and the collaboration for Killington’s World Cup the past four years solidified The Beast of the East as a strong venue for World Cup alpine ski racing to continue on the East coast. The HomeLight Killington Cup is a free event with options to upgrade. Spectators will have access to the festival village, live entertainment, and racecourse viewing area at the base of Superstar Trail. Tickets go on sale September 9, 2021. 

“I’m looking forward to seeing local and regional communities at Killington come together once again to support World Cup racing, especially in a year when athletes are vying for their Olympic spot,” says Herwig Demschar, chair of the local organizing committee in Killington. “Killington Resort has proven their ability to successfully host large-scale events and everyone knows The Beast throws a great party, making it all the more exciting to see Killington and east coast ski racing fans unite for another year of celebrating the sport.” 

With some international travel restrictions still in effect, Killington Resort continues to work with all appropriate parties ahead of the FIS Ski World Cup. The health and safety of guests, staff, and athletes is top priority, and as Killington returns to hosting international events, heightened health and safety protocols will be in place, as needed, during the HomeLight Killington Cup. Event protocols will comply with local health and safety measures, as well as those mandated by FIS, and may be modified based on evolving standards, public health, and governmental directives.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • U.S. Ski & Snowboard and its resort partners POWDR and Killington Resort are signing a two-year agreement to host the FIS Ski World Cup and HomeLight Killington Cup in Killington, VT in November 2021 and 2022.
  • 2016’s FIS Ski World Cup at Killington was the first World Cup in the eastern USA since 1991 at Waterville Valley, NH, and the first in Vermont since 1978 at Stratton Mountain. Killington also hosted the event in 2017, 2018, and 2019.
  • Killington’s 2018 FIS Ski World Cup set American attendance records with an estimated 39,000 spectators across three days (5,500 Friday’s opening ceremonies, 18,500 Saturday’s giant slalom races, 15,000 Sunday’s slalom races).
  • U.S. Alpine Ski Team superstar Mikaela Shiffrin has emerged victorious in slalom each of the last four years at Killington.
  • The HomeLight Killington Cup features a high-profile music and entertainment lineup including the World Cup Festival Village, fireworks, movie premiers, athlete signings, live bib draw, and more. 

###

Contact:
Courtney DiFiore, Killington Resort: 704-526-9685 or cdifiore@Killington.com
Annie Dreshfield, HomeLight: annie@homelight.com
Megan Harrod, U.S. Ski & Snowboard:
megan.harrod@usskiandsnowboard.org    

About Killington Resort
Killington Resort is a four-season destination sitting on 3,000 acres in the heart of Central Vermont’s Green Mountains. Killington boasts 92 miles of diverse snow sports terrain spread across six peaks including Pico Mountain and served by the most expansive lift network and snowmaking system in Eastern North America. After the snow melts, Killington features an 18-hole championship golf course, the family-friendly Snowshed Adventure Center, 35 miles of mountain biking trails, and 15 miles of hiking trails. The seemingly infinite après, dining, and lodging options have made Killington a world-class destination for East Coast skiers and riders for over 55 years. Killington is part of the POWDR adventure lifestyle portfolio. Visit www.killington.com for more information and discover more of what The Beast offers with and #beast365.

About HomeLight 
HomeLight is building the future of real estate — today. Our vision is a world where every real estate transaction is simple, certain, and satisfying for all. The best real estate agents rely on HomeLight’s platform to deliver better outcomes to homebuyers and sellers during every step of the real estate journey, whether that's enabling an all-cash offer, unlocking liquidity of their existing home to buy a new one, or creating certainty through a modern closing process. Each year, HomeLight facilitates billions of dollars of residential real estate business on its platform for thousands of agents. Founded in 2012, HomeLight is a privately held company with offices in Scottsdale, San Francisco, New York, and Seattle, with backing from prominent investors including Zeev Ventures, Menlo Ventures, Group 11, Crosslink Capital, Bullpen Capital, Montage Ventures, Citi Ventures, Google Ventures, and others. For additional information and images: www.homelight.com/press. 

About U.S. Ski & Snowboard
U.S. Ski & Snowboard is the Olympic National Governing Body (NGB) of ski and snowboard sports in the USA, based in Park City, Utah. Tracing its roots directly back to 1905, the organization represents nearly 200 elite skiers and snowboarders in 2021, competing in seven teams; alpine, cross country, freeski, freestyle, snowboard, nordic combined and ski jumping. In addition to the elite teams, U.S. Ski & Snowboard also provides leadership and direction for tens of thousands of young skiers and snowboarders across the USA, encouraging and supporting them in achieving excellence. By empowering national teams, clubs, coaches, parents, officials, volunteers, and fans, U.S. Ski & Snowboard is committed to the progression of its sports, athlete success, and the value of team.

Release courtesy of Killington. 

Anderson, Heimdal Join Davis U.S. Cross Country Team Staff

By Tom Horrocks
June, 9 2021
Relay Team
Greta Anderson (second from left) with current Davis U.S. Cross Country Team athletes, Zanden McMullen (left), Hunter Wonders, Gus Schumacher, and Luke Jager following the U.S. gold medal relay race at World Junior Championships in Lahti, Finland in 2019. (Barb McMullen)

The Davis U.S. Cross Country Team welcomes two new staff members, including Greta Anderson as Development Team Coach, and Bjørn Heimdal a member of the World Cup Service staff, for the 2021-22 season.

Heimdan joins the World Cup Service staff, replacing fellow Norweigen Per-Erik Bjørnstad. He has been running ski/wax service for the Norwegian regional Team Elon Nord-Norge since 2017 and has experience as both a coach and competitor. 

“He came highly recommended by Per-Erik, and by others that have worked alongside him supporting world-class athletes. He brings very high-level waxing and sport knowledge to our program,” said Davis U.S. Cross Country Team Director Chris Grover. 

Anderson comes to the Team with a wealth of experience as an athlete, coach, and program director. In her new role, she will enhance athlete and ski community support for the U.S. Ski & Snowboard pathway-based system, which provides many routes to successful race careers for athletes.

“Greta has been involved in a number of our cross country development pathway projects including Regional Elite Group camps, National Under-16 Camps, and most recently at both the 2019 and 2020 Junior/Under-23 World Ski Championships,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard Cross Country Program Manager Bryan Fish. “We are very excited to have her as part of the Team.”

Anderson’s role will be primarily focused on supporting Fish in all aspects of leadership and logistics surrounding the U.S. Development Pathway, including National Training Group camps, U.S. Nationals and Junior/U23 World Championships, Europa Cup, select SuperTour and other national-level competitions, as well as working on Coaches’ Education and Certification. Anderson has coached a number of current athletes on the Team, including Novie McCabe, Noel Keeffe, Gus Schumacher, Hunter Wonders, Luke Jager, and Zanden McMullen. 

“I feel like I’ve just been part of such legendary programs,” said Anderson, who skied for both Alaska Winter Stars and Alaska Pacific University (APU). “And I had such a good experience as a junior skier, that I can only hope that we can continue to stitch together great programs across the country. I’m really looking forward to collaborating with our staff to get our athletes to the starting line in Europe prepared.”

“Greta brings a wealth of experience coaching in the U.S. Development Pathway, having worked with clubs such as the Alaska Pacific University Nordic Ski Center, the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, the Crested Butte Nordic Ski Team, and most recently Alaska Winter Stars,” Grover added. “She has coached at multiple development projects including the World Junior/U23 Championships, the National U-16 Elite camp, and Regional Elite Camps in multiple regions. Our Hiring Committee was really impressed by Greta’s knowledge, her thoughtfulness, her excitement, and her passion for ski racing.”

 

Making the Most of Mammoth Camp

By Andrew Gauthier
June, 8 2021
Jamie
Jamie Anderson training at the 2021 U.S. Ski & Snowboard Mammoth Spring Camp. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard - @markclavin)

Following a successful close to the 2020-21 competition season, the U.S. Freeski and Snowboard Teams didn’t skip a beat. Athletes continued their pursuit of the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Games with a spring training camp at U.S. Ski & Snowboard Official Training Site Mammoth Mountain Ski Area from April 26 through May 21. 

The camp spanned four weeks and featured pro and rookie slopestyle, halfpipe, and big air athletes. As is tradition, Mammoth’s Unbound Park rolled out the red carpet including airbag training opportunities, a dialed halfpipe, and a great set of jumps and rails.

2018 Olympian and Mammoth Mountain Snowboard Team Alumna Maddie Mastro feels strongly there is no substitute for the development opportunities available at the famed Eastern Sierra mountain.

“Mammoth is a breeding ground for riders,” said Mastro. “It has everything you need. Mammoth has a fast lap, an amazing halfpipe, a great program, and people who care about it like Ben Wisner (Director of Mammoth Snowboard & Freeski Teams). In my opinion, they are just built for success and you can’t beat it. I think this all proves true when you look at all of the athletes coming out of Mammoth.”

 

 

According to U.S. Snowboard and Freeski Head Coach Mike Jankowski, in addition to the constant pursuit of progression, it was all about taking advantage of the time the team had together. “Coaches and athletes focussed on making the most of every day,” he said. “We wanted to kick off the off-season training period on a positive note and create momentum leading into the rest of the summer and fall.”

This approach included participating in off-snow activities for some cross-training and team building. Seven-time Crystal Globe winner Chris Corning had a special treat for his fellow teammates after rolling up to Mammoth with his boat in tow. This led to some epic post-riding wakesurf sessions at Crowley Lake.

“Being able to go to the lake after riding in the morning was really nice because it was a chance for everybody to get together in a different environment and just enjoy each other's company,” said Corning. “If you wanted to get in the water, you could, and if you didn’t, that was totally fine too. It was super fun to see everybody push themselves in a different way and all have fun together. Athletes were helping each other out and coaching each other, which really brought everyone closer together. It was a great experience.”

 

 

Athletes also had the chance to implement new strength and mental exercises thanks to U.S. Ski & Snowboard Athletic Development Coach Matt Voss and United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee’s Senior Sports Psychologist Alex Cohen. 

“It was amazing to have Matt and Alex attend camp,” said U.S. Freeski Slopestyle Pro Team Coach Dave Euler. “Matt brings an awesome energy to warm-ups and after-ski workouts to keep the team prepared. Alex brings a great deal of expertise and always gives the team a fresh perspective by providing new tools to reach their top performance. Each individual is different, so it’s always great to spend some time and reflect on what works for you personally.”

Mammoth also served as the first training camp for the new athletes to integrate and get to know fellow teammates. New recruits included U.S. Freeski Rookie Team members Konnor Ralph and Charlie Gnoza. “We had the full team in attendance to kick off the off-season, '' said Euler. “The rookies brought a ton of fun and energy to camp. 

 

 

The coaching staff also kept their eye on the contest progression and changing competitive landscape in freeskiing, thereby keeping U.S. athletes ahead of the curve.

“With transition features becoming more prevalent in slopestyle courses, we made sure to take advantage of the multiple opportunities available,” saud Euler. “Alex Hall landed his first dub 12 in the pipe and Rell Harwood landed an alley oop 1080 on the shark fin.” 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Rell Harwood (@rellharwood)

 

Hall and Harwood were not the only athletes to land personal never-been-done tricks. In fact, U.S. Freeski Pro Halfpipe veteran Hunter Hess made history landing the first-ever double cork 1800 in the halfpipe. 

 

 

The U.S. Freeski and Snowboard Teams will take a short break from snow before heading to Timberline Resort in Mt. Hood, Ore., from June 29 to July 24 as they continue their preparation for the ongoing Olympic qualification period.
 

Jalilvand, Wilson Join U.S. Freestyle Ski Team Staff

By Lara Carlton
June, 8 2021
Farzad Jalilvand, Chris Lillis
Farzad Jalilvand, Aerials' new athletic development coach, trains Chris Lillis at the USANA Center of Excellence (Lara Carlton - U.S. Ski & Snowboard).

The U.S. Freestyle Ski Team kicked off their 2021-22 prep season with two new staff members. Farzad Jalilvand joins aerials as athletic development coach and Olympic bronze medalist and former U.S. Ski Team member Bryon Wilson joins moguls as World Cup coach. 

The work spent training this summer is crucial as the Team heads into the Olympic year, and both Jalilvand and Wilson look forward to preparing athletes for the opportunity to represent their country on the world’s highest sporting stage.

Jalilvand, who will also serve as the athletic development coach for the Freeski rookies, comes to U.S. Ski & Snowboard with more than 10 years of experience. Jalilvand earned his Bachelor’s of Physiology in 2008 and his Master’s in Exercise Physiology in 2010, both from California State University, Northridge, where he has also taught since 2011. He is currently pursuing his Doctorate in Sport and Exercise from the University of Gloucestershire. 

Jalilvand’s experience extends across almost all sports at all levels. Most recently he served as the director of strength and conditioning at Grenada Hills Charter High School, where he was responsible for the physical preparation of athletes for basketball, soccer, football, track and field, volleyball and baseball. Jalilvand has consulted with Atlanta United, and has collaborated internationally on projects with performance staff from England, Australia and Brazil. He has published 21 manuscripts, focusing on the areas of fatigue monitoring, sprinting, resistance training, and change of direction and agility. 

Born in Iran and raised in Sweden, Jalilvand moved to the U.S. in 2004 and became a citizen in 2019. This marks Jalilvand’s first foray into winter sports and he is incredibly honored to be working at the Olympic level. “I’ve always wanted to work at the Olympic level,” he said. “I became a U.S. citizen in 2019 and always wanted to represent the U.S. in some way, it’s been one of my biggest goals.”

Jalilvand is approaching his position from an educational perspective. “These athletes are so motivated to begin with. So instead of approaching my role from that perspective, I’m constantly educating the athletes on ‘why.’ Why do we do cleans? Why do we squat? I want to encourage them to ask questions so they understand how strength and conditioning work plays into their performance on snow.”

Joining the team heading into an Olympic season has Jalilvand focused on keeping his athletes healthy. “We want these athletes to be as healthy as possible so they can have good and productive training camps. My goal is to facilitate a performance program that keeps them healthy, but also improves their performance at the same time. Specifically for aerials, I want to make them as strong as possible as it relates to landing. They experience a lot of forces coming down, up to 15Gs. My goal is to mitigate that by making them stronger in those specific positions.”

“Farzad has already hit the ground running getting our team in shape for this prep and competition season,” said Head Aerials Coach Vladimir Lebedev. “His vast experience across sport has given our athletes a new perspective on their strength and conditioning program. Farzad’s dedication and professionalism in the gym means I know my athletes have the ability to perform the workload we go through at the pools and on snow. I am excited to have Farzad join our team!”

After retiring from mogul skiing competition in 2018, Wilson is making his comeback to the U.S. Ski Team on the coaching side. 

Wilson started skiing when he was three-years-old and fell in love with moguls when he was 12. After finding some success in local Montana programs, the Wilson family moved to Utah so Wilson and his brother, Brad (a current U.S. Ski Team member), could participate in a full time program. Wilson skied with Wasatch Freestyle from 2004 to 2006 and made the U.S. Ski Team in 2007. Wilson was a World Cup skier for 11 years, earning four podiums, including one victory in his 77 starts; was the 2009 U.S. National Mogul Champion; and bronze medalist at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. 

Following his retirement from the U.S. Ski Team in 2018, Wilson joined the mogul coaching staff of Wasatch Freestyle. Named U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Freestyle Domestic Coach of the Year in 2019 and 2020, he has coached four athletes to achieving U.S. Ski Team spots: Sabrina Cass, Kasey Hogg, Madison Hogg and Nick Page; has qualified multiple athletes to Junior World Championships; and has coached multiple NorAm wins and champions. 

Wilson’s coaching experience extends back to when he was on the U.S. Ski Team and ran ski camps in Whistler with his brother and fellow athlete Sho Kashima, longer if you count the brother dynamic between him and Brad. “I’ve coached [Brad] since he was a little Grom,” Wilson quipped. 

“I thought what I had to offer [to the skiers in the Whistler camps] clicked and resonated with the athletes, and that’s what I really enjoyed. I enjoy seeing athletes figure stuff out and the light bulb light up. I like the challenge of figuring out what works for each athlete. Each athlete is different, you have to find out what verbiage and what kind of approach works for each individual. My goal is to try to have every athlete reach their highest potential.”

Bringing his competition and Olympic experience will be invaluable to the team this season and he is excited to be working at the national level. “I’m really excited about working with all of the athletes on this team. They are all very high-performing, dedicated, and willing to become the best. I enjoy working with athletes that want the best out of themselves. If they want that, I can help guide them there.”

“My goal right now is to develop a good relationship with the team. I want to be a great asset for them as they come into the season, hopefully I can help them get everything they can out of this sport.”

Serving as a coach on the U.S. Ski Team means Wilson is once again teammates with his brother, Brad. The Wilsons were teammates from 2012-2018, but this time the dynamic will be different. “[Being back on the team with Brad] is great, I love my brother. I am excited to work with him and not compete with him!”

“I am thrilled to welcome Bryon back to the U.S. Freestyle Mogul Ski Team,” said Head Moguls Coach Matt Gnoza, who coached Wilson from 2014-2018. “He’s been dedicated to the profession ever since he got into coaching. He is constantly working to better himself as a coach and has been very active in our sport committees. In a short period of time he has gained a lot of knowledge. He has earned the respect of our athletes and they describe Bryon as selfless, someone who will dedicate himself to everyone equally. I am excited to work with him heading into this important season.”

The U.S. Freestyle Ski Team is already hard at work on the water ramps at Official Training Site Utah Olympic Park and in the gym at the USANA Center of Excellence, with sights firmly set on the competition season ahead kicking off in December. 

U.S. Freestyle Ski Team Staff
Freestyle Director - Jeremy Forster
Team Manager - Alexis Williams
Communications Manager - Lara Carlton

Aerials
Vladimir Lebedev - Head Coach
Eric Bergoust - World Cup Coach
JC Andre - World Cup Coach
Peter Toohey - Physical Therapist
Farzad Jalilvand -  Athletic Development Coach

Moguls
Matt Gnoza - Head Coach
Riley Campbell - World Cup Coach
Bryon Wilson - World Cup Coach
Chuck Williams - Physical Therapist
Josh Bullock - Athletic Development Coach

Diggins Honored With Overall Athlete Of the Year Award

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
June, 7 2021
Jessie Diggins
Jessie Diggins, who won the overall FIS World Cup title and became the first American to win the overall FIS Tour de Ski, was awarded the Beck International Award as overall athlete of the year. (Nordic Focus)

Davis U.S. Cross Country Ski Team athlete Jessie Diggins was honored by U.S. Ski & Snowboard with its Beck International Award as overall athlete of the year. Diggins was one of eight athletes recognized for their accomplishments in the 2020-21 season. It was her third time winning the overall athlete honor (2016, 2018, 2021).

Diggins was recognized for her overall FIS Cross Country World Cup title, the first time an American has taken the overall crystal globe since Bill Koch’s win in 1982. Diggins also became the first American to win the Tour de Ski title.

The Beck International Award dates back to 1931, honoring some of the greatest champions in ski and snowboard sport.

“The pandemic season created an unusual playing field for our athletes, but their performances still came through,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw. “There were myriad breakout seasons for our athletes, but the accomplishment of Jessie Diggins in winning the overall FIS Cross Country World Cup title was an extraordinary accomplishment.”

Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin was awarded the Alpine Athlete of the Year award. Shiffrin, who lost her father tragically a year earlier, was honored for her resiliency and her four medals at the 2021 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships. It was the sixth time she has won the alpine award.

Freeskier Colby Stevenson was recognized for his breakout season with the Freeski Athlete of the Year honors. Stevenson won the Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix Slopestyle, took silver at FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships slopestyle, then went on to take the slopestyle and overall FIS Freeski Crystal Globes. It is his first time winning the freeski award.

The Freestyle Athlete of the Year award went to Winter Vinecki. The aerial skier captured three World Cup podiums, including second at Deer Valley Resort and her career-first win in Moscow. She finished second in the FIS Freestyle World Cup aerials standings.

Pioneering women’s nordic combined athlete Tara Geraghty-Moats won her third-straight Nordic Combined Athlete of the Year recognition. Geraghty-Moats has been a leader in the movement to bring nordic combined for women into the Olympics. She won the debut women’s FIS Nordic Combined World Cup Crystal Globe.

Teen ski jumper Paige Jones was named Ski Jumping Athlete of the Year. Jones scored the best U.S. women’s ski jumping results in two seasons. It was her first time winning the award.

Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim earned her second Snowboard Athlete of the Year crown. She returned after a year away from competition to record a dominating season, winning X Games and World Championships gold, plus the FIS Snowboard World Cup title. She was also the athlete of the year in 2016.

New Alliance with Wintersteiger, Swix Expands Center of Excellence Ski Service Center

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
June, 4 2021
USANA Center of Excellence

With the aim of providing the right resources for athletes who are inspired to be the Best in the World, the U.S. Ski Team is excited to announce a new alliance between Swix, the U.S. Ski Team, and Wintersteiger. Based at the USANA Center of Excellence in Park City, Utah, this cooperative effort will bolster the sport of ski racing through a reimagined ski and boot service education platform.

This project will begin as a set of new protocols and an updated ski and boot service facility that will be available to the U.S. Ski Team athletes at the USANA Center of Excellence but will quickly evolve into a domestic standardized ski and boot service system that will help minimize the “equipment variable” in all athletes’ progression regardless of where they choose to have their equipment serviced.

The service center “lab” will be where best practices are developed, defined, updated, and first implemented with U.S. Ski Team service staff. Once refined and established, these training procedures will be conveyed to all U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes, coaches, performance shops, and academies through a training and certification platform.

“At the World Championships, we were reminded that fast skis and precise edge tuning are a must to compete at the highest level,” said Jesse Hunt, U.S. Ski Team Alpine Director. “That is why we partnered with Wintersteiger to use the new Jupiter. This machine provides the latest in 3D base structuring, and their v-edge technology for custom edge work. It will definitely make a difference for our team.”

Ski and boot service education to U.S. Ski & Snowboard members will include in-depth training about ski tuning safety, ski audits, ski flattening and structure, edge bevels, and waxing. Additional modules will identify common troubleshooting and performance adjustments such as binding position, base bevel measurement, structure interpretation, and appropriate wax usage. This framework has already proven to be relevant to the U.S. Ski Team, and development level athletes in particular when deployed by U.S. Ski Team partners Wintersteiger and Swix. 

Join them on social media for additional updates to this new program and to learn more about regional efforts to support equipment preparation at places like the speed and tech venues at Copper Mountain. As an accreditation program is finalized and training seminars are announced, this will be the best way to hear about it.

Links to all of Wintersteiger’s social media can be found here: https://linktr.ee/Wintersteigerus

With four decades of experience and more than 30,000 ski tuning machines sold worldwide – including 1350 automated ski tuning machines – Wintersteiger is the global market leader in racing service solutions. The Austrian, German, and U.S. Ski Teams, as well as ski manufacturers Atomic, Fischer, Head, Rossignol, and Salomon, rely on the highest-quality results provided by Wintersteiger ski tuning machines to achieve competition success.

Release courtesy of Wintersteiger.