Name: Anna Marno
Hometown: Steamboat Springs
Circuit: NorAm/Europa Cup/ Regional FIS
I always travel with two pairs of boots — speed and tech. If it’s a four-event race, I’ll have up to four pairs of Nordica
downhill skis, three or four pairs of super G skis and two to three pairs of GS and slalom skis. One pair of poles for each
event and a backup for slalom and GS. I always travel with my boots with
me. You can always find a pair of skis or poles or whatever, but your boots
are pretty specific to you and if you aren’t happy in your boots, you’re not
going to have a good day.
My race day backpack is filled with: food — especially trail mix — water,
extra clothes, extra boot parts. For post-race footwear, snow boots or slippers, anything warm. I can’t travel without a book, some novels, some
sports-science type books.
Boots and Bevels
I recently have been skiing in a softer boot — the Nordica boot has a metal
plate in the bottom of it, so it tends to feel stiffer underneath the foot but I
like the flex to be a little bit softer. For my skis, I like a three-degree bevel
on the sides for tech events and some speed events depending on the
track and the base bevel just depends on the snow.
I always pack freeskiing skis if I can; I love freeskiing but there’s not always room. I go for the backcountry look.
In One Ear, Out the Other
Most of the time, I ski with music in one ear so I know what’s going on
around me. The type of music I listen to depends on the snow, the mood.
My race day playlist includes techno, pop, the type of music that you hear
in ski movies — anything that gets me in my own world.
JONATHAN SELKOWI TZ
What Should Be in a Junior’s Gear Bag?
While we asked racers at all levels about what they carry
in their race day bag, we thought it best to ask coaches what
should be in a J3 or younger racer’s bag.
First, the basics: skis, boots, poles, gloves, goggles, hat and
Next, protection: helmet, race suit, mouthguard, a back protec-
tor for GS and speed races; and shin and arm guards for slalom
races. Coaches also said it’s a good idea to have extra goggles
and gloves, as well as a few extra scratch-free goggle lenses.
Snacks, such as fruit or energy bars — or even gummy bears
— can be a benefit, and water should always be available to
young racers, so parents should always pack a water bottle or
Coaches want the young skier to be paying attention to the
weather report as well. It may sound like obvious advice, but one
coach reminded juniors to take more clothes if the forecast calls
for temps of minus 30 degrees. Another suggested rain gear and
a secondary set of outerwear so that there’s one for the start bag
and one for the finish.
Waxing and tuning gear is also critical for racers who have yet
to be assigned a tech rep other than Mom or Dad. “At least take
a scraper and file,” said one coach.
A wristwatch is also a coach-approved device for junior racers,
especially if it negates the need to take a cell phone to the hill.
“Recently, cell phones have been a problem,” said coach TK.
“They are sitting there, texting and calling instead of concentrat-
ing on the race at hand. An MP3 player can be a good thing, but
if possible I would get away from phones.”
For the evenings, there can be schoolwork, but iPads or laptops
can also be useful for downloading video from the day’s runs can
be very helpful. Other off-slope items to pack include the training
or competition journal and a notebook.
But the most single most important thing to take to race? Said
one coach, “A good confident attitude.” — Hank McKee