The Slides of March
Alpine ski racing’s March Madness is upon us and unlike the NCAA basketball big
dance, alpine’s madness involves young athletes from 11 to 19. For many, qualifying
for the various Junior Olympics or championships is their huge goal, representing the
culmination of a ton of work and effort.
Unfortunately, for many more there will be no end-of-season finales, no cool jackets, and no chance to challenge for the prized trophies. Yes, that is ski racing, but
for those who just missed going to their finals, disappointment abounds for parents
and athletes — which is why we asked former Ski Racing writer Edie Thys Morgan,
Edie, who was with
the alpine team in the
late 1980s and early
1990s, worked with
us for several years,
developing a column
that she dubbed “
Racer eX.” She covered
many facets of alpine
ski sport — its light
sides as well as its
dark moments. Now a mother of two boys racing out of the Dartmouth Skiway in
Hanover, N.H., Edie is experiencing her children’s highs and lows much the same
as hundreds of parent across the country. Her column can be found on page 69
and is a must-read for all USSA parents and athletes, particularly at this time of the
season. As Edie points out, ski racing is a long and often winding road.
Nobody knows how hard racing is better than Resi Stiegler. The affable, hugely
energetic Wyomingite scored her first World Cup podium this week after suffering through and overcoming a horrific series of season-ending injuries. Talk about
perseverance! This young lady has it in spades. Stiegler’s story is one you have to
admire. Always a talent, she refused to bow to her setbacks, learned how to overcome her post-trauma fears and anxieties. The result was an unexpected podium
— unexpected to everyone but her. Eric Williams writes about her stunning Ofterschwang performance that took her to second place in the brilliant March sunshine
beginning on page 19.
Sarah Hendrickson soared to the first women’s jumping title in history last week.
By winning in Japan, Hendrickson —who makes her home in Park City where she
can capitalize on both the Utah Olympic Park and the Center of Excellence — totally dominated the circuit’s maiden year with eight wins. Securing the premier crystal
globe is a bit of history no one else will earn in the sport. Congratulations to Sarah
and the rest of her team for bringing home the initial nation’s cup title as well.
The U.S. scored another historic moment when Ryan Cochran-Siegle captured
the World Junior championship downhill title 30 years after his mother, Barbara
Ann Cochran, won gold at the Olympic Winter Games in Sapporo, Japan. Another
member of the legendary skiing Cochran clan, Ryan was coincidentally wearing
bib No. 1, the same number his mother wore when she captured the gold medal in
slalom three decades ago. Ski Racing’s Hank McKee updates you on the Junior
World Championship story thus far. Hint: think Norge and Die Schweiz.
For the first time in memory, Ski Racing is highlighting a U.S. Team sponsor: our
newest partner, Global Rescue. We do this because Global Rescue provides a
unique service to which parents and every club should give thoughtful consideration. Operated by a group of ex-Navy SEALs and other skilled Armed Forces
veterans, the company provides experienced medical and evacuation services.
Importantly, Global Rescue is also linked to the Johns Hopkins Medicine, one of the
nation’s most broad-based and international medical facilities. Certainly, if needed,
Global Rescue can pull you off the Eiger’s north wall, but it also can provide worldwide medical consultation in conjunction with Johns Hopkins, recommending local
doctors and facilities. If your child or your family is traveling to ski camps in the
Southern Hemisphere or the West this summer, this service more than deserves
a thorough look. Furthermore, if your vacation plans include rafting the Colorado,
tickling lion’s bellies in the Serengeti or trekking in Bhutan, Global Rescue provides
needed insurance at a reasonable price.
Winter sports are racing toward their frenetic finals. Kikkan Randall has earned
an historic first-ever by capturing the women’s nordic sprint title. Hannah Kearney
has already locked up the moguls’ globe. And Ms. Crystal, Lindsey Vonn, should
be packing four globes with the possibility of adding one more. In alpine skiing the
U.S. is sending a record 12 World Cup athletes to the 2012 Finals in Schladming.
As always, Ski Racing editors will be keeping you abreast of all the excitement on
its webpage and through its apps, updating as the action occurs. Keep in touch and
use your sunscreen. It is going to be one heck of a spring! — G.B. Jr.
DIRECTOR OF MARKETING &
GARY BLACK JR.
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