Dick Butler
By Dick Butler
Editor of www.Snowsportsna.com Video courtesy of You Tube November 7, 2009
Tid bits on US Alpine Skiing Competition,
Version 1

Skiing is definitely not a spectator sport in the US. Challenge football fans to name a few US Ski Team Members and you will probably get a blank stare. Not so in Europe where there are standing crowds surrounding race courses and skiers are national heros. American skiers are more well known in Europe than in the USA.

There are less than 100 days till the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver BC, and US performance chances in alpine skiing look very promising.

The US does have its own skiing heros, and their popularity and successes are on the rise. Note the Lindsey Vonn ads on TV, for instance. Being beautiful helps, but she is one fantastic ski racer.

  • Frontrunners for the US include Lindsey, Ted Ligety and several others.
    Lindsey, a native of St. Paul Minnesota, now calls Vail her home. Last season Lindsey won 7 of the 16 World Cup Downhill races she entered. As a result, she is the reigning World Cup Downhill Champion.

    She has two overall World Cup Titles to her credit, i.e. 2008 & 2009 and 22 World Cup victories, which rates her the all time top US female alpine ski racer. Quite an achievement.

    Ted, a Utah native, was nicknamed "Ted Shred" by his coach when he was 10 years old. He won the only Olympic Gold for the US men in the Torino Olympics on February 14th 2006 for his performance in the Combined, (a mix of both downhill and slalom). He was just 21 years old at the time. He performs best at Giant Slalom. At this year's World Cup opening venue in Soelden Austria, he placed second. He won the GS title in 2008 and a bronze medal at the 2009 WC Championships.
  • Other strong US team contenders include Bode Miller, who rejoined the team in September, Scott Macartney, Andrew Weibrecht (hometown: Lake Placid), Marco Sullivan, Julia Mancuso (Torino GS Champ), Stacie "Cookie" Cook, Resi Steigler (daughter of 1964 triple medalist "Pepi" Steigler), and slalom specialist Hailey Duke.
  • Olympic alpine athletes will be selected primarily from individual race finishes on the 2009-10 FIS Audi Alpine World Cup circuit. The top two athletes in each event have a guaranteed start. Athletes are required to be ranked in the top 500 in the world on the FIS Points List to be eligible. In speed events, athletes also must have 120 FIS points.
  • Olympic Team Selection Period: Oct. 23, 2009 - Jan. 25, 2010
  • Team consists of a maximum of 22 (max. 14 per gender)
  • The team nomination deadline is January 25, 2010
  • Up to four U.S. athletes per event can compete.
  • Top Criteria: 1. One or more top three World Cup finishes 2. One or more top 10 World Cup finishes 3. Total Audi FIS Alpine World Cup points in an event
  • For the calendar of FIS ( International Ski Federation) races check
    out:http://www.fisalpineworldcup.com/venues/calendar.html
  • For current World Cup standings check out
    http://www.fisalpineworldcup.com/leader-board.html

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