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Countdown to the 2022 Olympic Winter Games

Sustainability

U.S. Ski & Snowboard, a national and global leader in snow sports, is committed to addressing climate change and stewarding sustainability of winter sports. Millions globally are inspired by winter sports and enjoy healthy, active lifestyles in winter environments. Climate change threatens our winter environments with receding glaciers, rising sea levels, volatile weather cycles and less snowfall.

10 Questions With Kai Owens

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
November, 23 2021
Kai Owens
Kai Owens captured her first podium with a win to lead the U.S. women's dual moguls sweep at the 2021 Intermountain Healthcare Freestyle International at Deer Valley Resort. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

2021 Rookie of the Year Kai Owens caught up with FIS for their 10 questions Q&A series:

Continuing with our Q&A series today we bring you 10 questions with 2021 moguls Rookie of the Year Kai Owens out of USA. Enjoy! 

Q: Looking back at 2020/21 season, no doubt it was a very successful season for you. First World Cup victory, 4th place in the overall standing, impressive results at World Championships in Almaty that led to the Rookie of the Year award. What does it all mean to you? 

A: Last season meant a ton to me. It was full of adversity and there were many challenges that I faced. For me being able to find success in a difficult season is very exciting and confidence building. Overall I am very grateful for last season and the opportunities that were presented!

Q: Your first World Cup victory came in front of the home crowd in Deer Valley where you led the US podium sweep in dual. It’s hard to imagine a better introduction to World Cup podium. Can you tell us something more about that day and the feeling you had once it became clear you’re the winner of the day. 

A: Deer Valley last year was very special for me for so many reasons. I’d say a lot of stars aligned and the feeling I had after my last run was indescribable. I was very excited and proud of my team! That day was also very special for my family and I because we welcomed a new puppy into our family. He is a lilac French bulldog named Mochi. I woke up that morning of the competition and had already won because I got a puppy.

Q: What is the biggest challenge for you when competing during a worldwide pandemic and how do you deal with it?

A: The biggest challenge that I faced with the pandemic going on was the stress. Typically we deal with lots of pressure and performance related stress. But last season our safety and the safety of everyone else added extra. I personally deal with the challenge of the pandemic by practicing good hygiene, following all U.S Ski Team and CDC guidelines. And just doing my best to be mindful and positive. I hope and trust that everyone stays safe and I try to take advantage of all opportunities that we get during this time. 

Q: Now looking ahead to the new season with the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing on the horizon, what are your goals for 2021/22?

A: My goals for this upcoming season is to continue to build off of last year, and keep the momentum going. I am working towards making the U.S Olympic Team. It would be my first Olympics. 

Q: The US moguls team looks like one big family. You spend a lot of time together training, traveling and competing. What is like to be part of such a successful team? Who pushes you the most and how? 

A: We definitely are like a family. I am very grateful to be apart of an incredible team full of very talented individuals. I am especially grateful for their support and also their dedication to each other. I would say the women of our team push me the most. They not only push me physically and in training, but they push me to be a good teammate. I’m very proud to be apart of it! 

Q: What is your favourite World Cup venue to compete at?

A: Honestly I don’t have a favourite one. It’s definitely tied up between Deer Valley and Tazawako, Japan. I love the culture and time I got to spend in Japan, and I love getting to compete on home soil and on  the “Champion" run . However I will have to re-evaluate after this upcoming season, I would love the opportunity to compete in China, which is my birth country. And I would also really like to compete in France. So fingers crossed that I will make it to both! 

Q: Name three things you love about skiing moguls.

A: I love the challenge of moguls, mastering turns, jumps and being fast makes me feel like I’ll never get sick of it. Secondly I love the people and culture of mogul skiing. Finally I am definitely addicted to the adrenaline rush of skiing bumps. 

Q: Single or duals? And why?

A: I honestly like both equally. They are similar in lots of ways but different enough for me to not be able to compare them. I’d say I have a different mindset for each event. I definitely get more nervous for singles, and with duals it’s easier for me to focus on the rounds. Singles is what I train for, it’s the only mogul event in the Olympics and if I had to choose it would be singles. But duals definitely wins for excitement. 

Q: What do you wish for the future of the sport?

A: I hope to see our sport grow and I hope to see athletes continue to get better and progress further. 

Q: Name three things you never travel without on the World Cup circuit?

A: Ha! Well I’m not a light packer that’s for sure. My top three is ski equipment clothes and toiletries…  I consider those extreme necessities. But I have countless things I bring on World Cup that I wont travel without ie nutition, recovery, shoes, etc.

Original article on FIS-Ski.com

McDonald wins FIS Open, Lemley finishes third

By Lara Carlton
November, 22 2021
Cole McDonald
Cole McDonald posted the best results for the U.S. men both days of the FIS Open in IdreFjäll, Sweden, Nov. 20-21. On Saturday he placed seventh and bested that to first on Sunday. (Instagram @_colemcdonald)

The U.S. Mogul Freestyle Ski Team is back to bumpin’ after wrapping up competition at the FIS Open in IdreFjäll, Sweden, Nov. 20-21. D Team up and comers put their mark on the international field to lead the U.S. contingent.

The FIS Open marks the end of the final pre-season training block for the mogul skiing community. With limited mogul venues around the world at this time of year, many teams opt for several weeks of training in Sweden and finish off the prep period with this first competition opportunity. Athletes are able to put to snow what they’ve been working on all summer and get back into the competition mindset. 

“It’s always so fun to finally put the bibs on and compete after such a long prep,” said World Cup Mogul Coach Riley Campbell. ”We prep from May until November, that’s a really long time to train without competing. So it’s always exciting when it’s time to compete again.”

Cole McDonald posted the best results for the U.S. men on both days. On Saturday he placed seventh and bested that to first on Sunday. "It feels great to finally prove to myself that I am able to compete with the people I have idolized my whole life," said McDonald of his performances.

“Cole skied incredibly well,” said Campbell. “He was just so fast and clean with a really dominant bottom air. On that second day, he proved he was up there with those veteran-level skiers.”

Saturday’s podium was topped by Japan’s Ikuma Horishima, followed by Sweden’s Walter Wallberg in second and Canada’s Elliot Vaillancourt in third. Jesse Andringa, in his first competition since injury, finished sixth, Landon Wendler 15th, Alex Lewis 24th, and Joel Hedrick 26th. McDonald shared the podium on Sunday with Japan’s Ikuma Horishima in second and Sweden’s Walter Wallberg in third. 

Elizabeth Lemley led the women on Saturday, finishing in third place. “Liz skied great,” said Riley. “She threw the highest-scoring highest DD trick in the women’s field, a cork grab. She proved she’s an up and comer to watch.” Kasey Hogg finished 43rd and Alli Macuga did not finish. Lemley shared the podium with Japan’s Rino Yanagimoto in first and Karuka Nakao in second. 

On Sunday, Hogg posted the best U.S. Team result with seventh place. Alli Macuga finished 28th and Lemley finished 58th. Japan’s Yanagimoto won again on Sunday, Kazakhstan’s Anastassiya Gorodko finished second and Japan’s Yuki Kajiwara finished third. 

Results
Nov. 20, Women’s Moguls
Nov. 20, Men’s Moguls
Nov. 21, Women’s Moguls
Nov. 21, Men’s Moguls

 

Laukli Puts Norwegian Elite In Place At Beitostølen

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
November, 21 2021
Sophie Laukli
Sophie Laukli, competing at the 2021 World Champs in Oberstdorf, Germany, opened her 2021-22 season with 15th place on Saturday's 10-kilometer classic during the season opener at Beitostølen. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard)

Sophie Laukli went into 15th place on Saturday's 10-kilometer classic during the season opener at Beitostølen and put several of the Norwegian national team runners in place on their own home track. 

Cross-country skiing.com met the 21-year-old after the opening distance at Beitostølen on Saturday afternoon. 

"It is very fun to do so well in such a company, and very fun also because my path into cross-country skiing is quite different than for most other elite runners," says the American national team member.  

Laukli is originally from Maine in the far north of the American east coast, and it was only a couple of years ago that she started to focus seriously on cross-country skiing. Until then, she had practiced versatility with a number of different sports, and bet for a long time, including a long time on football.  Cross-country skiing was more of a hobby I did in the winter. And in Maine, the winter conditions were not always very good, so it was not always tempting. But then I lived in Switzerland for a year, and that was when I started investing in cross-country skiing, Laukli says. 

Read the Full Story at Langren.com

Shiffrin Second to Lead Two Americans Into Points

By Megan Harrod
November, 21 2021
Mikaela Shiffrin Levi
It was déjà vu over at the second of two FIS Ski World Cup slalom races in Levi Finland, with Saturday’s podium repeating itself. Two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin once again finished in second place, while Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova in first, and Germany’s Lena Duerr in third. (Millo Moravski - Agence Zoom/Getty Images)

It was déjà vu over at the second of two FIS Ski World Cup slalom races in Levi Finland, with Saturday’s podium repeating itself. Two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin once again finished in second place, while Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova in first, and Germany’s Lena Duerr in third. American Paula Moltzan also finished in the points, landing in 24th.

Battling some jetlag and ongoing back stiffness, Shiffrin came out firing on a course set by coach Jeff Lackie that was pretty straight with some room but with rhythm on the pitch. Before the first run, Lackie commented that the weather and the snow surface at the Finnish Lapland venue were the best he has seen on that pitch, where Shiffrin has won four times and has podiumed nine times. Shiffrin had a solid first run, even with a slight bobble in the hairpin heading on to the pitch, trailing Vlhova by a fine of margin once again—18 hundredths of a second. Switzerland’s Michelle Gisin was .36 seconds off the pace in third. 

The second run was an Austrian-set course with more swing but not much tempo—a stark contrast to the American-set first run. Moltzan, who straddled in the second run and did not finish on Saturday, threw down a solid time to earn her first World Cup points of the Olympic season in 24th. Swiss Wendy Holdener, who recently returned from some time off due to a double wrist injury sustained while training in the gym, made things exciting with a fast run that would eventually land her just off the podium in fourth place. Duerr took home another third place, grabbing two World Cup podiums in a row and ending Germany’s eight-year drought in the discipline. 

It was down to Shiffrin and Vlhova, in an ongoing rivalry, and today was more of the same between the two. Shiffrin skied a blazing fast top section but got in the backseat and ran into trouble on the pitch, making an acrobatic recovery. She generated speed to the bottom and came down .31 seconds ahead of Duerr. Vlhova had a flawless second run, though, and finished .47 seconds ahead of Shiffrin to take her second win of the weekend and her fourth-straight victory at the venue. 

When asked if she was disappointed following the race, Shiffrin replied, “To be honest, I’m not disappointed with anything...I was pushing, I made a mistake, and we don’t know what would have happened without the mistake, but after that, I pushed even harder.” She continued, “And, I haven’t really done that in a long time. I mean, if I made a mistake like that last season, I would have just—I don’t know—skied to the finish. I skied the pitch the second run really, really strong in with a course that didn’t have a lot of tempo, and some tracks. I’m really excited about it, actually.” 

The second-place finish marks Shiffrin’s 109th career podium in 195 World Cup starts—an astounding 66% podium percentage. In her last 54 World Cup slalom starts, Shiffrin has finished on the podium 50 times (36 wins). In a sport with a plethora of variables, Shiffrin has been able to maintain a mind-blowing level of consistency, bringing podium-level performances to every start gate she enters. 

When asked if she had gained more confidence heading into the HomeLight Killington Cup next weekend, Shiffrin paused to think and replied, “I have a little bit more confidence after feeling that I could push my skiing. It was maybe not a perfect run, but knowing I could still push it harder after a mistake, that’s a really big step. So, maybe a little more confidence headed into Killington, but it’s also a home race, and I want to do well. I have a good record there, so there’s some expectation and pressure there as well. But, it’s also really exciting to race in Killington, so I’m looking forward to it.” 

AJ Hurt narrowly missed qualifying for the second run, while teammate Nina O’Brien got low and late in a combination and did not finish. Lila Lapanja also started but did not qualify for the second run. 

Up next for the women is a giant slalom and slalom in Killington, Vt., where Shiffrin has won four-straight slalom races, and the entire team has seen some solid results—Moltzan and O’Brien included. The men head to their first speed series in Lake Louise, Canada, featuring a pair of downhills and a super-G. 

RESULTS 
Women’s slalom

HOW TO WATCH
You can watch all replays both on Peacock TV and at skiandsnowboard.live. 

FOLLOW
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Twitter - @usskiteam

 

Shiffrin 2nd with Great Recovery

Watch World Cup Racing

By Lauren Beckos
November, 21 2021
Beaver Creek Stands
Fans at the 2019 Beaver Creek Birds of Prey

Watching World Cup Racing in the U.S. just got a lot easier! Click to see the full writeup of the latest changes!

You can watch live and on demand World Cup Racing through the NBC Peacock Premium tv and Ski and Snowboard Live.

When/where to watch NBC Sports via NBC, NBCSN, Olympic Channel:
Where to Watch on U.S. Ski & Snowboard Website

Other online services offer access packages to many of the NBC Sports channels:
Hulu w/Live TVAT&T TV NowSlingTVYouTube TV

See full schedule and there's a link you can use to add the events to your digital calendar:
FIS Website Calendar

Printable PDF calendars of schedules:
Official FIS PDF Schedules MEN WOMEN
Schedule Also Listing Times of Events once they are available (can be printed as PDF with link at bottom of page)

Masters Getting a New Look Online

By Lauren Beckos
November, 20 2021
All Masters Division Logos

After more than a decade of skiracereg.com (SRR) and even longer with some division websites, some transitions are in process this season. We would like to thank Doug Briggs for his service to the masters maintaining and adapting the registration system that has been a tremendous asset for our masters divisions for the last decade. Doug streamlined our registration not just within division, but across divisions. He continually added and adapted functionality all on a volunteer basis. We are truly lucky to have had his support and help improving and streamlining the racer experience. We are excited that this transition will allow Doug to get out, travel, and play more as all retirees should! 

Many divisions are still with SRR this season as we phase in the transition. See below for details about registration for each division. New England Masters and Mid-Atlantic Masters are the first to move forward in the transition. You can see their new websites and mamasters.org and nemsracing.org (also a new domain for NEMs.) The new registration website is masters.adminskiracing.com. Part of the transition will include development of a central hub for all masters divisions that better combines division sites with registration, results, and archives - we look forward to tackling more pieces of this project next summer. In the meantime, if you use any of the new sites, feedback is welcome to make these sites they best they can be!

Far West, PNSA, Intermountain/Northern, Rocky, Central Members
Renew your membership with your division and register for events same as last year through skiracereg.com . If you are new click "sign up" and create an account. If you plan to attend National Speed Series or other events in the New England or Mid-Atlantic race series you will need to create an account at masters.adminskiracing.com and details will be released later for how to do that as a visiting racer.

New England and Mid-Atlantic Members
For the 2021-2022 season, the New England Masters and Mid-Atlantic Masters are starting the process of moving the Masters to a new registration platform. All membership renewal and registration for New England Masters and Mid-Atlantic Masters events will take place at masters.adminskiracing.com. 

For FIS Masters Cup, Nationals, or registration for races with the other divisions still on skiracereg.com you will need to renew your account on SRR to register. Just log in with your previous username and password to update your credit card information on file and register same as you have in the past.  If you have not previously had a SRR account, click "sign up" and select skiracereg.com as your home series. In either case, renewing your SRR account or creating a new one, no membership fees will be assessed through SRR.

Alaska, New York, and Southern Members
Continue to register as you have at the series specific websites. See usskiandsnowboard.org/masters/masters-regions for links and contacts.

2022 Masters Regional and National Championship Event Programs Now Available

By Lauren Beckos
November, 20 2021
2022 Masters Events
Regional and Nationals Events for 2022

We are excited to announce the dates, locations, and information for several of the major events for the 2022 season! Be sure to book your lodging as soon as possible - after last season theres a lot of people booking early to make up for lost trips last year. See the Masters Events and Schedules Page of click on the event programs for full details for each event! We'll post information for the Eastern Regional Championships as soon as it becomes available!

We're excited to check out a new venue for the FIS Masters Cup. The Rocky Division has been racing there for many years and can't wait to share this awesome venue and race crew with you! Nationals will be back at Sun Valley - a favorite venue who last hosted the National Championships in 2015. Then we'll be off to Ski Cooper for the National Downhill - a master friendly course great for all abilities but a tricky one to master with bumps and rollers throughout.

Image removed.

Event Program  Registration (opens 12/1) 

  Mar. 21     GS/SL training
  Mar. 22     GS/SL training
  Mar. 23     Super G A/B Groups, Alpine Combined*  C/D Groups
  Mar. 24     Super G C/D Groups, Alpine Combined* A/B Groups
  Mar. 25     A/B Slalom, C/D Giant Slalom
  Mar. 26     A/B Giant Slalom, C/D Slalom

*Alpine Combined is 1-run SG followed by 1-run SL.

 

Image removed.

Event Program  Registration 

  Mar. 31  DH Camp
  Apr. 1     2DH Training Runs
  Apr. 2     2DH Training Runs
  Apr. 3     2DH Races (both count for National Speed Series)
                      DH1 National Championship DH
                      DH2 Rocky Division DH

2022 FMC/WR at Beaver Creek Feb 4-6

Beaver Creek, CO is excited to host the 2022 Phillips 66 FIS Masters Cup/Western Regional Championships! The racing and the free-skiing are fantastic! 

Event Program  Registration (opens 12/1) 

  Feb. 3     SG training tentative (9am-12pm)/venue open to public in afternoon
                 Check-in 4-6PM at the Avon Comfort Inn (also on race morning 7-8AM)
  Feb. 4     2SG
  Feb. 5     2 one-run GS
  Feb. 6     SL

Hunter Henderson is Top American Finisher at Stubai Zoo

By Annie Fast
November, 20 2021
Hunter Henderson jumps during Slopestyle competition.
Hunter Henderson earned a fourth place finish at the season-opening slopestyle World Cup at Stubai Zoo. (FIS Freeski )

U.S. Freeski Rookie Team member Hunter Henderson came into Saturday’s finals with the top qualifying score at the season-opening 2021/22 FIS Freeski slopestyle World Cup at Stubai Zoo. He put down two solid runs in the finals, but with the rest of the field firing on all cylinders, he was unable to break into the top three. 

The sun was out, spirits were high and course conditions were all-time as Henderson earned his highest score of 83.74 on his first run. He led with a switch left side double cork 1620 tailgrab into a right double 1440 reverse tailgrab on the second jump. He put together a combination of technical tricks on the lower rail features including a high-scoring wallride 450 to pretzel 270 out. 

"All the U.S. athletes in finals were one small mistake away from being on the podium,” said U.S. Freeski Team Head Coach Skogen Sprang. “Everyone skied great and we’re proud of the runs they were going for. This was one of the most technical rail sections we’ve ever seen in a World Cup and look forward to continuing to work hard and push the level of the sport in the next event.”

Defending FIS Big Air Crystal Globe Winner Birk Ruud from Norway earned the top spot in the end, with a score of 87.60, followed by Max Moffatt of Canada in second place with a 86.26, and Ferdinand Dahl of Norway in third with a 86.06. 

U.S. Freeski Pro Team member and seven-time X Games medalist Maggie Voisin earned a fifth-place finish with a score of 63.03, with Kelly Sildaru of Estonia earning first with a 88.68, Sarah Hoefflin of Switzerland in second with a 80.30, and Johanne Killi of Norway finished third with a score of 78.32. 

Elite level freeski competition will continue Dec.  2–4 , 2021 at the VISA Big Air presented by Toyota in Steamboat, Colo. 

RESULTS
Men’s Freeski Slopestyle
Women’s Freeski Slopestyle

FOLLOW
Instagram - @usfreeskiteam
Facebook - @usskiandsnowboard
Twitter - @usskiteam

Shiffrin Second in Levi World Cup Slalom Opener

By Megan Harrod
November, 20 2021
Shiffrin Second in Levi
Under the lights in Finnish Lapland, two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin added another podium to her collection of 108, with a second-place finish. (Agence Zoom/Getty Images - Millo Moravski)

Under the lights in Finnish Lapland, two-time Olympic champion and six-time world champion Mikaela Shiffrin added another podium to her collection of 108, with a second-place finish. Slovakian rival Petra Vlhova was first, and Germany’s Lena Duerr grabbed her inaugural World Cup slalom podium, in third. 

Shiffrin came into the weekend with some nerves and uncertainty, after dealing with back pain that kept her from training for two weeks after her career-70th victory in Soelden, Austria—which is challenging for Shiffrin, who thrives on preparation. Even so, Shiffrin put down two solid runs and grabbed her 108th career podium, in 194 World Cup starts. In her last 53 World Cup slalom starts, Shiffrin has finished on the podium 49 times (36 wins), boasting an otherworldly ability to consistently ski at the highest level of the sport. 

Vlhova, who came into the weekend with valuable training the last three weeks in Levi and on the race slope, showed confidence and smoothness in her skiing both runs and stepped on the gas at the bottom of the second run to make up for time lost—winning by .31 seconds. Duerr earned her first-ever World Cup slalom podium, .84 seconds off the pace. In her career, Duerr has had six World Cup parallel podium finishes, but never a slalom podium. With the podium, Durr claimed Germany's first World Cup podium in a women's slalom since December 29, 2013, when Maria Hoefl-Riesch finished third in Lienz, Austria. 

A host of challengers were on their heels, already proving that this Olympic season will be an exciting one for the athletes and fans. Slovenia’s Andreja Slokar, who won last weekend’s parallel event in Lech, Austria, continued to show her consistency and strength, landing in fourth, with Swede Anna Swenn Larsson was fifth and 2021 slalom world champion and World Cup slalom discipline globe winner Austrian Katharina Liensberger in sixth. 

With a victory in giant slalom in Soelden, followed by a second place in the slalom opener, Shiffrin noted it was a great start to the season, despite recent frustrations with her back. “It’s a nearly perfect start, and especially after the last couple of weeks,” she said. “It’s easy to start getting greedy, and I feel like in order to win races you really have to earn it. I earned a second place today, but I didn’t quite earn the win, so I’ll try to do a little bit cleaner and stronger skiing tomorrow, but there are a lot of really solid pieces, and that’s it...that’s today. I got the podium and that’s awesome.”

Having trained at Official Training Site Copper Mountain, Colo. coming into Levi, Shiffrin had great conditions, but what was missing was the confidence of skiing on a pitch like that of the Levi Black slope. She lost some time on the pitch, struggling to find her timing on the first part of the pitch, saying, “...it was like the first five or six turns...I don’t know...it was like I was skiing backwards. It was just a little bit wrong timing, and it doesn’t take much to lose a lot of speed, especially with this snow because it’s so responsive.” Shiffrin was happy with the adjustments she made in the second run on the top flat section and will look to bring the positives from today’s race to tomorrow.  

Paula Moltzan had a solid first run, finishing in 18th, and was bringing more heat and energy into the second run before she straddled on the pitch and DNFed. AJ Hurt, Nina O’Brien, and Lila Lapanja also started for the Americans but did not qualify for a second run.

The battle will continue tomorrow with another slalom on the Levi Black slope and another chance for Shiffrin to add a reindeer to her herd of four, including Rudolph (2013), Sven (2016), Mr. Gru (2018), and Ingemar (2019). As Shiffrin said, “Tomorrow is a new race day, and we really have no idea what’s going to happen, but we’re going to fight!” 

RESULTS 
Women’s slalom

STARTERS
AJ Hurt
Lila Lapanja
Paula Moltzan
Nina O'Brien
Mikaela Shiffrin

HOW TO WATCH
All times EST

Sunday, Nov. 21
4:30 a.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Women's Slalom, run 1 - LIVE, Levi, FIN, Streaming Peacock, Ski and Snowboard Live
7:30 a.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Women's Slalom, run 2 - LIVE, Levi, FIN, Streaming Peacock, Ski and Snowboard Live

FOLLOW
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Twitter - @usskiteam

 

Shiffrin Second in Levi SL