Birds Eye View
Beaver Creek’s course BY HANK McKEE
If it works, don’t mess with it.
Last month, the National Development System (NDS) of the U.S. Ski Association held a speed camp for top J2 racers at Beaver Creek for the sixth
The opportunity is too good to pass up. Beaver Creek is internationally
renowned for the course conditions created and maintained for the annual
Birds of Prey races. With World Cup events set at the beginning of December, the work is going to be done. The NDS speed camp simply takes advantage of those ideal race conditions.
USSA domestic director Walt Evans explains the schedule: “Starts imme-
diately after the World Cup at Beaver Creek. The athletes are actually on
the race crew for the giant slalom, Dec. 6, and then we train downhill on
the Birds of Prey Dec. 7, 8 and 9; take a day off; and then we have two more
days of giant slalom.”
Thirty-nine of the best J2s received the invite to train at Beaver Creek.
Snowbird sent Emma Naatz and Bronson Wright. From Steamboat came
Julia Cooper, Ali Pougiales, Katie Hostetler and Sam Glaisher. Mammoth
sent Lillie Pieper, Bryce Eller, Maddie Riffel, Kirk Carlson and Tyler Wal-
lasch. From Rowmark, Linnea Zavala, Andrew Kircher and Ryan Chase
attended. Squaw Valley sent Morganne Murphy and Kenny Wilson. Brock
Garden came from Eldora. Great Lakes offered Alex Gencheff.
Whitney Tegan and Caleb Maher came in from the Taos Sports Associa-
tion; Daniel Demschar and Kieran Adams from Park City. Ali Gunesch and
Austin Dean represented Mount Hood while Mount Bachelor added Jordan
Schweitzer. Holderness sent Lily Ford and Sam Macomber. Kevin Hartman
from Aspen and Mick Osmundson from Crested Butte attended. Also par-
ticipating were Mitchell Underhill from Buck Hill; Ian Beal from Ausblick;
and Miles Derrick, Kendall Pasteris and Daniel Duffy from Green Mountain
Valley School. Prescott McLaughlin from Stratton and Eric Haferman from
Bridger Bowl traveled to Beaver Creek, too.
These skiers represent the best 14 to 16-year-old racers in the country and
got the rare opportunity to ski with each other and get input from U.S. Ski
Team alumni (Jonna Mendes and Kevin Francis were on hand) as well as
receive tips from some of the best emerging coaches and veteran coaches, all
bringing personal experience to the table.
For video clips and additional information, visit ussa.org/magnoliaPublic/other/camps/ju-niorspeedproject.html