You may know Laurenne Ross (Bend, OR) for her consistent top 10s in speed events at the end of last season, or maybe you know of her because of her beautiful photos on Instagram or her flowing words on her blog. But how much do you really know about the creative, talented ski racer?
From local ski hills to the PyeongChang Olympics, the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) encompasses all athletes that share a passion for skiing and snowboarding. We explore what makes each skier and rider a champion with stories from the U.S. Ski Team, U.S. Snowboarding and U.S. Freeskiing, next to kids winning a NASTAR medal, landing their first cork 7 or joining a club team. Alongside USSA’s mascot Champ, take a look at how all of these athletes strive to be Best in the World.
During the summer months when the snow’s not flying, the U.S. Alpine Ski Team athletes are still hard at work at the Center of Excellence and beyond. Athletes use the summer to focus on building a solid strength and endurance foundation to prepare them for on-snow camps in the summer and fall. So, what does it take to fuel an elite-level female speed athlete (aka “Speed Unicorn”)? Building a strong foundation means consuming a high-calorie, high-iron diet.
We sat down with the USSA’s High Performance Sports Dietitian, Allen Tran, and High Performance Chef Megan Chacosky to get the scoop about what it takes to fuel a women’s speed team athlete through a day of strength and endurance training.
Allen Tran stands in the USSA Center of Excellence kitchen. (U.S. Ski Team)
At the end of June, officials from the USSA, FIS and Killington headed out to the official site of the Killington World Cup to map out the event in which the best female racers in the world will race in Vermont for the first time since 1978.
The crew included Tao Smith—the president Vermont Alpine Racing Association and headmaster of Killington Mountain School—and FIS women’s Chief Race Director Artle Skaardal, among others. Discussions ranged from hill set and spectator seating to weather and snowmaking on the hill ‘Superstar.’
The crew walks the hill that will hold the upcoming World Cup race. (Ski Racing-Gabbi Hall)
PARK CITY, UT (July 18, 2016) – The U.S. Ski Team has announced that Mike Day, current head men’s coach at Green Mountain Valley School (GMVS), will make a return to the U.S. Ski Team to serve as women’s head coach, working specifically with Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin.
A coach in various capacities for more than 15 years, Day previously coached Ted Ligety (Park City, UT), who became a world champion and won two World Cup giant slalom titles during Day’s tenure with the men’s technical team from 2010 to 2013.
Each athlete accepting the nomination to U.S. Alpine Ski Team receives a high level of world-class program support, along with access to the USSA Center of Excellence, as well as athletic benefits including an elite coaching, sport science, sports medicine and high performance staff, and education opportunities.
An official team announcement will be made in the fall.
Florian makes his debut on the U.S. Ski Team in 2017 with a D Team nomination. In 2016, he was part of the historic downhill day at World Juniors on the 2014 Olympic track in Sochi, when four young American Downhillers made their way into the top 10. Teammate Erik Arvidsson (Woodside, CA) was crowned downhill champ, Sam Morse (Sugarloaf, ME) was fourth, Szwebel seventh and Drew Duffy (Warren, VT) in 10th.
Hailing from the ski mecca that is Vail, CO and skiing for Ski and Snowboard Club Vail and the National Training Group, Nellie-Rose Talbot joins the U.S. Ski Team on the development team for the 2017 season with some solid experience under her belt. Growing up in a ski racing family, she was positively influenced on the mountain by her father and sisters. In fact, her father taught her how to ski before she could walk. Beyond her family, her ski team was like a family who supported and looked out for her success.
Cecily Decker joins the C Team for the 2017 season. Ranked 75th in the world in downhill with 19 top-10 results, including nine podiums with five overall wins, Decker earned honor of the Golden Ski Award for her 2016 season results. She was first in a NorAm Cup downhill at Lake Louise, first in a FIS giant slalom race at Sugarbush, first in a FIS giant slalom race at Jiminy Peak, first in the downhill and fourth in the super-G at the North American Junior Championships at Copper Mountain, and finished out the season by winning in downhill at a FIS race at Aspen.