2017-18 World Cup Season By The Numbers

Did you know that over the course of last winter, 519 athletes competed in a total 75 World Cup races across 13 countries? In February, more than 300 athletes from 80 countries competed for medals in 11 races at the Olympic Winter Games in South Korea….

British Alpine Team Selected for 2018-19 Season

After a stellar season highlighted by two top 10 Olympic finishes, the Delancey British Alpine Team is ready to launch into 2018-19 with 31 athletes selected across three squads.

The Delancey British Alpine World Cup Squad consists of the four athletes which were selected for PyeongChang and went on to collectively claim a share of fifth place in the inaugural Olympic Alpine Team Event.

Dave Ryding, who also earned an individual top 10 in Korea, leads the squad on the back of 11 World Cup top 10s including a podium over the last two seasons. Fellow slalom specialist Laurie Taylor steps up from the Europa Cup squad after a top 30 individual performance in PyeongChang and fourth place overall in the Far East Cup slalom standings.

Alex Tilley scored her best-ever World Cup result with 13th at Courchevel in December and will be looking for an even more consistent stream of top-level results this season. Charlie Guest returns again to the World Cup squad after an injury-hampered season, which still delivered a 33rd place individual slalom finish in PyeongChang and four FIS race victories including her fourth national slalom title in the last five years.

There are three additions to the Delancey British Europa Cup (EC) squad for 2018-19: Iain Innes, Zak Vinter and Robert Poth.

Innes comes into the squad as the overall national champion (shared with Billy Major) and the overall national junior champion after a strong week at the Delancey British National Alpine Ski Championships in Tignes earlier this year. At that event, Vinter finished second behind Ryding in the men’s slalom and was also the recipient of the Craig Macfie Foundation training grant. Poth, a technical specialist, had a series of strong results in Junior, CIT and FIS races this season and – like Innes and Vinter – he steps up from the FIS Squad.

The trio join Cara Brown, Jack Gower, Billy Major, Nick Moynihan and Charlie Raposo who remain in the EC squad from last season.

The FIS squad features 19 athletes with Charles Rankin, Leonidis Karavasili, Soneva Scott and Lois Jackson joining 15 athletes continuing on from the 2017-18 program.

Head alpine coach Reini Fernsebner says that it is an exciting time for the discipline with the strength and depth of talent continually on the rise.

“There is some great talent coming through and as we move into the next Olympic cycle there is no doubt that a number of athletes we have selected in the FIS and Europa Cup squads will start to push our World Cup athletes,” said Fernsebner.

“That’s the kind of environment we want to create, where we have healthy competition amongst our best skiers, pushing each other to be their best which will bring good results at the biggest competitions in Europe and America.”

The 2018-19 FIS alpine season kicks off in South America, Australia and New Zealand in July and August. The first World Cup events take place in October while this season also features the World Championships, World Junior Championships and the European Youth Olympic Winter Festival.

2018-19 DELANCEY BRITISH ALPINE WORLD CUP SQUAD
Charlie Guest (24, Perth SCO), Dave Ryding (31, Preston ENG), Laurie Taylor (22, Basingstoke ENG), Alex Tilley (24, Torphins SCO)

2018-19 DELANCEY BRITISH ALPINE EUROPA CUP SQUAD
Cara Brown (24, London ENG), Jack Gower (23, Chichester ENG), Iain Innes (20, Edinburgh SCO), Billy Major (21, Saffron Walden ENG), Nick Moynihan (24, Tunbridge Wells, ENG), Robert Poth (20, Potters Bar ENG), Charlie Raposo (22, London ENG), Zak Vinter (19, Glasgow SCO)

DELANCEY BRITISH ALPINE FIS SQUAD
Jess Anderson (19, Hannington ENG), Reece Bell (16, Vail USA), Will Beney (18, Vermont USA), Abi Bruce (17, Fetcham ENG), Honor Clissold (20, Richmond ENG), Olivia Foster (17, Leatherhead ENG), Tom Hudson (17, Bury St Edmunds ENG), Lois Jackson (16, Newcastle ENG), Leonidis Karavasili (18), Alicja Krahelski (18, London ENG), Darcie Mead (21, Kingston ENG), Fraser Middleton (19, Glasgow SCO), Victoria Palla (17, Zell am See AUT), Charlie Rankin (16, Glasgow SCO), Soneva Scott (16, Colorado USA), Max Vaughton (19, Haute Savoie FRA), Owen Vinter (16, Glasgow SCO), Angus Wills (19,London ENG), Sarah Woodward (16, Odiham ENG)

Head Coach: Reini Fernsebner Ladies’ World Cup Coach: Noel Baxter Men’s World Cup Coach: Tristan Glasse-Davies Europa Cup Coaches: Stefan Leitner, Mike Pilarski

Release courtesy of British Ski & Snowboard

FIS Congress Underway in Greece

As meetings continue at the biennial FIS Congress held in Costa Navarino, Greece, some important issues have been discussed  and the committees have agreed on proposals they wish to push forward to the FIS Council for final approval.

Starting with the classification subcommittee, the main topic of discussion was the desire to adapt the penalties of different races held from the FIS level to the World Cup. The aim of this rule adaptation is to better reflect the level of competition with the points awarded at each race especially rewarding the World Cup racers better.

In the ladies’ alpine skiing subcommittee, the topic of gender equality was discussed and the subcommittee is supporting various recommendations to improve gender balance within the FIS Council, the Congress, and the various committees. Also, it will be proposed that two athletes can represent the athletes’ commission in the FIS Council, one woman and one man. As no renewed proposal was brought up regarding Lindsey Vonn’s request to race with the men in Lake Louise, this topic was tabled indefinitely. On Twitter, Vonn indicated she is putting it off for a year.

Discussions on drones took place in the rules subcommittee, but no conclusion has been made. Safety and fairness must be taken into consideration as well as the legal implications in each country. The proposal that was on the table in the subcommittee wasn’t approved and will be reviewed – with the wording clarified – in order to be presented again at the meetings in the fall.

The World Cup subcommittee spent quite a lot of time sharing thoughts on various topics raised by the national ski associations and the athletes’ commission. The proposal to change the enrollment for the City Events has been approved by the subcommittee. If the FIS Council agrees as well, there will be no more national quotas meaning the next racer on the slalom WCSL would move up in the event when a qualified athlete cannot participate in the race. On the topic of a possible reduction of the World Cup starting field, a small step but strong sign was taken by the subcommittee which agreed to reduce the maximum number of athletes participating in an event on the men’s side by one athlete. Hannes Reichelt was present to represent his fellow ski racers and mentioned different aspects that the athletes would like to see improved on the World Cup. Even though none of the proposals could be approved as such, the active participation and the interaction with the main actors of the World Cup were very appreciated by both sides.

The next major announcement will be the host of the 2023 World Championships, which is expected to be public on May 17.

Release courtesy of FIS

Alpine Canada Names National Team for Coming Season

Following up on success over the past quadrennial, Alpine Canada is pleased to announce its nominations for the Canadian Ski Team for the 2018-19 season. Alpine Canada will continue its pursuit of international podium success at World Cups, World Championships, and Olympic Winter Games.

Athletes have been nominated to the team having met selection criteria and/or coaches’ discretion and/or invited to participate in selected camps and competitions.

 

2018-19 CANADIAN ALPINE SKI TEAM NOMINATION
World Cup Women – Senior
Ali Nullmeyer (Georgian Peaks, Ont.; 21/08/98)
Amelia Smart (Panorama Ski Club, B.C.; 1/08/98)
Candace Crawford (Georgian Peaks Ski Club, Ont.; 11/03/94)
Erin Mielzynski (Georgian Peaks Ski Club, Ont. ; 25/05/90)
Laurence St-Germain (St. Férrol-les-Neiges, Que.; 30/05/94)
Marie-Michèle Gagnon (Mont-Orignal, Que.; 24/04/89)
Mikaela Tommy (Edelweiss, Que.; 10/05/95)
Roni Remme (Alpine Ski Club, Ont.; 14/02/96)
Stefanie Fleckenstein (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 6/09/97)
Valérie Grenier (Mont-Tremblant, Que.; 30/10/96)

World Cup Men – Senior
Benjamin Thomsen (Invermere, B.C.; 25/08/87)
Broderick Thompson (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 19/04/94)
Brodie Seger (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 28/12/95)
Cameron Alexander (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 31/05/97)
Dustin Cook (Mont Ste-Marie, Que.; 11/02/89)
Erik Guay (Mont-Tremblant, Que.; 5/08/81)
Erik Read (Banff Alpine Racers, Alta.; 31/05/91)
Jack (James) Crawford (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C./ Georgian Peaks Ski Club, Ont.; 03/05/97)
Jeffrey Read (Banff Alpine Racers, Alta.; 1/09/97)
Manuel Osborne-Paradis (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 8/02/84)
Morgan Megarry (Craigleith Ski Club, Ont.; 26/05/93)
Philip Brown (Craigleith Ski Club, Ont.; 9/11/91)
Riley Seger (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 21/04/97)
Sam Mulligan (Grouse Mountain Tyee Ski Club, B.C.; 20/02/97)
Simon Fournier (Mont-Tremblant, Que.; 26/05/97)
Trevor Philp (Banff Alpine Racers, Alt.; 1/05/92)

Development Team Women

Marina Vilanova (Mont-Tremblant, Que.; 2/02/99)
Sierra Smith (Mont St-Marie, Que.; 17/03/00)
Cassidy Gray (Team Panorama, Alta.; 25/01/01)
Alyssa Hill (Team Panorama, Alta.; 14/06/01)

Development Team Men
Asher Jordan (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 23/11/99)
Declan McCormack (Osler Bluff Ski Club, Ont.; 27/06/99)
Jamie Casselman (Team Panorama, Alta.; 17/05/00)
Liam Wallace (Sunshine Alpine Racers, Alta.; 03/09/99)
Max Kirshenblatt (Whistler Mountain Ski Club, B.C.; 04/07/98)
Pierre-Elliot Poitras (Sutton Ski Club, Quebec; 06/07/01)
Raphael Lessard (Bromont Ski Club, Quebec; 16/10/01)

Head Coaching Staff
Athletic Director: Martin Rufener
Team Operations: Amber Sinclair
Men’s Speed Head Coach: Burkhard Schaffer
Men’s Tech Head Coach: Dusan Grasic
Men’s Europa Cup Head Coach: John Kucera
Men’s Development Head Coach: Peter Rybarik
Women’s Development: Marie Eve Boulianne
Women’s Combi Head Coach: Manuel Gamper

The Alpine Canada Canadian Alpine Ski Team nomination guidelines can be viewed here.

Release courtesy of Alpine Canada

FIS Confirms 2018-19 World Cup Calendar

FIS Congress is underway in Greece, and one of the first announcements was the confirmation of the 2018-19 World Cup calendar. The schedule is highlighted by the 2019 World Championships in Are, Sweden, from Feb. 5-17.

The men and women each have two series in North America. The women will return to Killington, Vt. while the men will compete in Beaver Creek, Colo. Both genders will venture to Lake Louise, Canada, for the first speed races of the season.

Beyond the classic tour stops in Europe like Zagreb, Croatia, and Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, the women are returning to the home of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, Sochi, Russia, for a downhill and super-G. The races will be one of the final stops of the season along with GS and slalom races in the Czech Republic and World Cup Finals in Andorra.

Meanwhile, fans will be able to catch their favorite male ski stars at Wengen and Kitzbuehel as always. The men’s calendar also features some less familiar stops like Bansko, Bulgaria, for GS, super-G, and alpine combined.

World Cup racing action begins on Oct. 27 with the women’s giant slalom in Soelden, Austria.

Prioritize Mental Training This Summer

It happens every winter. In December, January, and February, I get calls from national team athletes and parents of young racers who are struggling mentally in their ski racing and they have big races coming up. They want me to somehow fix them quickly. Though I think I’m pretty good at what I do, I’m no miracle worker.

To put the request in perspective, do you wait to get injured before working on your fitness? Do you wait till you develop a major technical flaw to work on your technique? Of course not. You build your conditioning and work on your technique in the offseason to prevent injuries and technical problems from arising during the race season. Well, you should approach how you treat the mental side of your ski racing in precisely the same way. So, this article a challenge for you to take an essential, yet often neglected, piece of the ski racing success puzzle and make it a priority during the offseason.

Let me elaborate in three ways. First, I speak to racers, coaches, and parents around the world about the mental aspects of ski racing. Whenever I get the chance, I ask them how important the mental side of ski racing is compared to the physical and technical sides. Though there are always a few who say that the mind is less important than the body and technique, about 99 percent say that it is as or more important. Admittedly, I don’t even think it’s more important because all of the mental training in the world won’t help if you’re not physically or technically capable of getting down the hill. But, I think it’s safe to say that without a well-trained mind, there is no chance of real success.

Next, I ask racers how many hours a day they devote to their physical and technical development. Most say from 2-6 hours depending on the season. Then, I ask, if the mind is so important, does that mean you’re spending 2-6 hours a day on mental training? At this point, there are a lot of shaking heads and nods of recognition. Clearly, the answer is ‘no,’ but the question is mostly rhetorical and meant to open your eyes to the absurdity of not spending time on such an important contributor to our sport.

Second, I work with a number of racers each year, from U14s with big dreams to Olympians who are realizing their dreams. What has become abundantly clear to me is that, once the foundation of fitness, technique, tactics, and equipment are established, it is the mind that separates racers who achieve their goals from those who don’t. This occurs at two levels. Having the right mindset and preparation enables you to get the most out of your training. And, on race day, being able to stay positive, calm, focused, and withstand the pressure—self-imposed and external—will enable you to ski your fastest when it really counts.

Third, of the racers who come to me, the number-one reason is because they can ski really fast in training, but they can’t seem to translate that into race-day results. And they don’t understand why. To help you understand, think of it this way. There is no objective difference between a training course and a race course; they both have a start, the course, terrain, and snow conditions, and the finish. So, what makes races different from training? It’s obvious: results matter in races! And that difference occurs entirely in your mind. Your challenge is to either ignore the difference or embrace the difference.

Let me say that you actually do quite a bit of mental training without realizing it. I’m sure that you attempt to motivate yourself, think positively, fire yourself up, and focus in training. Well, that is mental training. Here’s the problem. Do you approach mental training in the same way as you approach physical and technical training? Do you have a comprehensive, structured, and consistent mental training program? Probably not. Would you do your physical conditioning or technical work in a haphazard way? Of course not, because trial and error is neither an effective nor efficient way to improve. Rather, you have a systematic program that guides your physical and on-snow training, thus maximizing your efforts. You should approach mental training the same way.

Have I convinced you yet that you should make mental training a priority during this off-season? If so, here’s what you can do:

  • Do some self-analysis and understand what worked this past winter and what didn’t, as well as your mental strengths and areas in need of improvement. You can use the eight questions I provided in my last article.
  • Get feedback from your coaches on where they think you need to improve mentally.
  • Learn more about the mental side of ski racing by reading my past articles, so you can decide the mental areas you want to work on this summer.
  • Commit to a structured and consistent mental imagery program (more on how to do that in my next article).
  • Find a qualified sport psychologist or mental coach in your area (I may be able to help you find one, so feel free to reach out).
  • Register for one of my Prime Ski Racing online mental training courses.

Certainly, you should continue to participate in committed physical conditioning and on-snow programs this off-season. But if you commit to an equally rigorous mental training program, I can say with confidence that you will be even more prepared to achieve your ski racing goals next season.

Note: This article is updated encore presentation of a previously published article that never gets old.

BRASS Foundation Educates U.S. Ski & Snowboard Athletes and Staff at Snowbird

This spring, the Bryce and Ronnie Athlete Snow Safety Foundation (BRASS Foundation) hit the slopes of Snowbird, Utah, offering free avalanche education for 55 U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes and staff from across numerous sports, featuring alpine skiing Olympians David Chodounsky and Tommy Ford.

The BRASS Foundation was formed in 2016, in memory of promising U.S. Ski Team athletes Bryce Astle and Ronnie Berlack. On January 5, 2015, Ronnie, Bryce and their teammates stood at the top of an ungroomed slope which was open and not roped off. It was located between Pistes 1 and 30, within the boundaries of Soelden ski resort in Austria. The athletes saw fresh ski tracks in the powder. The slope below them had received substantial snow accumulation, plus wind loading the night before, but had not been controlled for avalanche mitigation. The athletes were unaware that a level three regional avalanche warning, which means “considerable risk” was posted that day for the Soelden area.

As they were skiing down the slope, a massive snow slide surprised the athletes and engulfed Ronnie and Bryce. Their four teammates narrowly escaped.

Since inception, the responsibility of BRASS has been to drive avalanche awareness, create educational resources, offer training programs and direct grants related to athlete safety and security nationwide. This is the second year BRASS has offered such training featuring BRASS/American Institute for Avalanche Awareness Research and Education (AIARE) Level 1 courses and Level 2 courses, expanding the knowledge of U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes and staff who frequent the mountains they call their office and home. Among Level 1 participants was also Laura Astle, mother of Bryce Astle.

“BRASS is unique in that we focus our avalanche education on ski and snowboard athletes,” said Michael Silitch, BRASS Executive Director. “U.S. Ski & Snowboard has more than 35,000 members and by the time they’re a U14, they don’t have time to take avalanche courses. November, December and early January when courses typically take place are important training periods for these athletes. We have created a unique opportunity for athletes to take multi-day BRASS/AIARE Level 1 and 2 courses at the end of their season. We’re fortunate to partner with Snowbird, one of only a few venues who can host a successful avalanche course in late April. We found plenty of dangerous winter snow layers still buried deep in the spring snowpack.”

BRASS Foundation operates with a “Know Before You Go” approach, educating U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes and staff that the following five steps will help prepare them properly for travel in the backcountry: get the gear, get the training, get the forecast, get the picture and know how to get out of harm’s way.

According to Silitch, athletes and staff have walked away from these courses with a widespread disbelief that they ever went off-piste skiing without taking this course. For Silitch, it is important to balance these athletes’ elite level of skiing and riding with an overall understanding of the environment in which they spend most of their time.

“All of our athletes will retire one day and we want them to have the skills for a lifetime of safe skiing,” reflected Silitch.

Chodounsky, a veteran alpine athlete and two-time Olympian, took advantage of the training opportunity this spring, partaking in both the Level 1 and Level 2 courses.

“Avy safety is super important since our entire life as ski professionals is spent in the mountains,” noted Chodounsky. “Most of it is in resorts and on controlled slopes, but we definitely find ourselves in avalanche terrain, whether we know it or not. We especially get into avalanche areas when freeskiing around in Europe – where just by going off the groomed runs you can find yourself on uncontrolled snow, which is how the tragic accident happened with Bryce and Ronnie.”

For Chodounsky, this training was invaluable, and he walked away with a wealth of knowledge. Athletes and staff across all sports – including representation from nordic combined, cross country, snowboard, freestyle and alpine – participated in BRASS avalanche courses this spring. Freestyle skier and Olympian Jaelin Kauf echoed Chodounsky’s sentiments about the importance of knowledge of the backcountry and added that it is essential to “think ahead and plan for the unexpected.”

“Skiing is part of our everyday lives and we spend most of the year chasing the snow around the globe,” reflected Kauf. “We often find ourselves in Europe skiing uncontrolled ski resorts and we are put in the position where we have to decide if it is safe to ski on normal aspects of the resort. It’s a completely different world than the U.S. and the responsibility lies with us and the coaches. I think that avalanche training is important for myself, fellow athletes and coaches because it helps us understand snow conditions and grows our awareness of our surroundings. It gives us the tools to better understand.”

Kauf was quick to call out that you don’t walk away from the BRASS course as an omniscient avalanche guru who is fearless in the mountains. “If anything, it makes you a little timider,” said Kauf. “It makes you conscious of the consequences when dealing with the mountains and aware of the small factors that can cause an avalanche.”

World Cup assistant men’s alpine speed coach Scotty Veenis’ official home is Park City, Utah, but his second and third homes – and where he spends most of his time – are hotel rooms and mountaintops across the globe. Last year, Veenis completed the Level 1 course and he followed it up this spring with the Level 2 course. His biggest takeaways were that he wished he had been able to take the class sooner and that everyone involved in snow sports of any kind should make avalanche awareness a major priority.

“Being from Virginia originally, I came out here and knew nothing of avalanches,” recalled Veenis. “Unfortunately, it has taken me since 2003 – so almost 15 years – to take a class. For the athletes, I think this training should be mandatory. The mountains are our playing field. Because we travel so much and ski so much terrain around the world, we should all take the time to put towards avalanche training. The importance of not only basic awareness – but knowledge of the tools and how to use them, whether it’s Austria, France, Japan or back at home – is important. In Europe, especially, the out-of-bounds is different from the out-of-bounds at home in North America, where everything is roped off.”

The consensus from all athletes and staff was that the courses were an incredible value-add, and the instructors are world-class AIARE educators who presented the information in an engaging and effective manner. Best of all, they say, it was applied learning from classroom to mountain. On the first day of the Level 1 course, participants participated in a classroom session and beacon test, on the second day they were shoveling pits and looking at the different layers of snow and then the third day it was all route-finding and applying what they had learned from the previous two days to work collectively in a group to make decisions out in the field. This meant U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes and staff across all sports were given the chance to spend time and work together in a #oneteam approach to find solutions.

Chodounsky walked away from the course full of gratitude, “A very big thank you to the BRASS Foundation, AIARE and everyone who helped to set this up for us!” he said. “It’s a very valuable experience and tool for us to have as I know winter life in the mountains will always be in the future for all of us. It’s important to remember Bryce and Ronnie as well. I wish it wasn’t because of their accident that we are doing this, but their names are living on for a wonderful cause.”

Release courtesy of U.S. Ski & Snowboard

GMVS Athletes Win Golden Ski Award

The North American Snowsports Journalists Association – East Region
has picked Abigail Jewett of Ripton, Vt., and Jimmy Krupka of Waitsfield, Vt., both
from the Green Mountain Valley School, as their 2018 Don A. Metivier Golden Ski
Award winners.

Each season, NASJA-East (formerly the Eastern Ski Writers Association) awards the
Don A. Metivier Golden Ski Award to the most promising male and female junior alpine
racers in the Eastern U.S. The awards will be presented at a reception at the New
England Ski Museum on Friday, June 8 from 5 to 7 pm.

Abigail Jewett
Jewett was the iconic slalom and giant slalom junior racer this season. She was a
member of the U.S.World Junior Championships team. In December, she garnered two
NorAm wins in slalom at Panorama in British Columbia, and followed that in January
with a bronze in GS at Stratton in Vermont. In March at Sugarbush, she
took two silvers in slalom, and a sixth place in a NorAm GS race at Kimberley in British
Columbia. She followed that up with a seventh place in slalom at Sugarloaf at the
Junior National Championships. She then finished off the season in April with slalom
gold at Stowe.

Jimmy Krupka
Krupka struggled early at NorAms in Copper, Lake Louise, and Panorama, but managed
to pull out a career-best 18th place (from bib 58) on the last day of the Panorama
NorAm series, in the slalom. He spent early January out west, where he skied the
college circuit and had three top-10s in consecutive GS races. He was selected to
represent the U.S. at World Junior Championships in Davos, Switzerland. He had
another career-best result in the NorAm Finals combined at Kimberley, BC when, after
being 28th after the super-G run, had a fast slalom run and moved up to ninth overall.
Finally, in a Sun Valley slalom, he won the second run, moving from 27th to 12th.
The season was his best yet, in all aspects, from results to fun to team dynamic. His
team, the C-Team/National Training Group/Development Team, which came to be
known as The “Shiver,” was made up of a stellar group of guys that he was proud to call
teammates.

“We were coached by Justin Johnson and Graham Flinn, and the team’s
impressive results were products of our incredibly positive team atmosphere,” he said.

The Golden Ski Award has been presented to the top junior male and female skiers in
the East since 1969, the year after the modern World Cup circuit started. Many of the
Golden Ski winners have gone on to World Cup and Olympic gold as well. In 1975, the
Golden Ski was “lost.” In 2007, the New England Ski Museum was given some
artifacts, and in that donation was the original Golden Ski. ESWA revitalized the honor,
and named it in memory of long-time snow-sports journalist Don A. Metivier, former
editor of Ski Racing Magazine.

“The Golden Ski Award is the oldest honor given to junior alpine ski racers that exists today,” says Jim Gregory, Chair of the NASJA-East Golden Ski Award Committee. “We are proud this year to honor Abigail Jewett and Jimmy Krupka, two extraordinary athletes, and we look forward to watching them pursue their goals and set the bar even higher in the sport we all love so much.”

Here is the list of previous Golden Ski Award Winners:
1969: Tyler Palmer, Karen Middleton
1970: Charles Bent, Karen Middleton
1971: Rod Taylor, Judy McNealus
1972: Laurent Gaudin, Jody Palmer
1973: Jerry McNealus, No female winner
1974: No award
1975: Scott Light, Holly Flanders
1976-2007: Award Lost
2008: Bump Heldman, Julia Ford
2009: Nolan Kasper, Julia Ford
2010: Ryan Cochran-Siegle, Julia Ford
2011: Ryan Cochran-Siegle, Mikaela Shiffrin
2012: Ryan Cochran-Siegle, Mikaela Shiffrin
2013: Kieffer Christianson, Mikaela Shiffrin
2014: Sam Morse, Alice Merryweather
2015: Drew Duffy, Nina O’Brien
2016: Ben Ritchie, Cecily Decker
2017: George Steffey, Patricia Mangan

Release courtesy of North American Snowsports Journalists Association – East Region

Squaw Valley Academy Announces 2018 Travis Ganong Scholarship Winner

Squaw Valley Academy (SVA) is pleased to announce the 2018 winner of the Travis Ganong Scholarship. The scholarship is a partnership with World Cup alpine skier and previous student, Travis Ganong, and has been proudly awarded to Tatiana Tobolka, an incoming ninth grader from Prague, Czech Republic.

Tobolka is a member of the Czech National Team who embodies Squaw Valley Academy’s mission statement in her commitment to academics, athletics, and community. Tobolka has been named the U14 Overall Czech Alpine Skiing Champion in 2017. She is an extremely hard-working student and athlete, who is devoted to her studies and her athletic training.

Ganong is a Tahoe resident, Olympian, World Cup winner, World Championship medalist, U.S. Ski Team member, and SVA’s director of snow sports. This scholarship is awarded annually to promising student-athletes that embody Ganong’s passion for education and alpine ski racing. This merit-based award provides full or half tuition until graduation and is open to all students entering grades 9 and 10 for the upcoming school year.

Squaw Valley Academy’s Competition Ski Program enables alpine ski racers to achieve a college-preparatory education while training full-time with Squaw Valley Ski Team and racing at the U14, U16 and FIS level. Focused on the development of the student-athlete, Ganong adds a unique elite-athlete perspective to the experience at Squaw Valley Academy through his mentorship role as director of snow sports.

Squaw Valley Academy looks forward to the winner’s enrollment and her participation in the SVA Competitive Ski Program for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Release courtesy of Squaw Valley Academy

Dusan Grasic Named Canadian Men’s Tech Head Coach

Alpine Canada welcomes one of its own to the head coach position for the men’s tech alpine ski team: Dusan Grasic. Grasic is moving back to coaching at the World Cup level after spending time in the Alpine Canada head office as the Director of Domestic Sport. In this role, Grasic elevated coaching at all levels of ski racing and collaborated with provinces on building the development pathway. He has also been instrumental in the transition of the Canadian Ski Coaches Federation into Alpine Canada, and elevating programs such as the re-introduction of U16 National Championships, Snow Stars, Rising Stars and programming for the next generation of National Team athletes.

Grasic transitions back to coaching with an impressive history in ski racing. Grasic competed for the Slovenian National Team before dedicating his career to coaching. Grasic has coached numerous elite athletes to greatness, propelling them to achieve their best at the highest levels of international competition. Grasic coached Canadian Thomas Grandi to the first Canadian win in a men’s technical event and Mike Janyk to win the first Canadian medal in a technical event at a World Championships. From 2006 through 2008, Grasic served as Program Director at Alpine Canada when the team achieved the most podiums to date. He will bring over 30 years of coaching experience and immense value to the men’s tech team.

“Coaching is my first love and I’m really excited to continue working with athletes that I was coaching when they were at the Europa Cup level,” said Grasic about joining the team. “The goal for the first year is to build as a team and improve results at the World Cup level. Building the team culture and working on preforming well at all the World Cup races is the first goal. We have a very talented group of athletes and I know we can be competitive with the rest of the world. They have all demonstrated they have the speed to be on the podium and I look forward to seeing what they can do next season.”

Alpine Canada’s alpine athletic director, Martin Rufener, sees huge value in bringing Grasic back to coaching. “Dusan’s technical and tactical knowledge of what it takes to compete at the highest level is paramount to the team achieving success. He will be working with the athletes on the small details and changes so they can be successful. Bringing in a Canadian coach will help to create and build and positive culture for the team.”

Alpine Canada congratulates Grasic and wish him the best in his new role. The position of Domestic Director Sport will be filled following a thorough search.

Release courtesy of Alpine Canada.

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