More cold conditions continued to sweep across New England as EISA racing convened in Ripton, VT for the Middlebury Carnival. Familiar faces topped the field in both classic and freestyle events. This event marked the last regular-season competition before Regional Championships in Lake Placid, NY.
Olivia Bouffard-Nesbitt (Rocky Mountain Racers) didn’t have a great start, but she held off a charging Russian to finish 12th in the 15 k skiathlon at U23 World Championships. She believes she accomplished something else, too: potentially earning a place on Canada’s team to senior World Championships in Falun.
Scott Patterson followed up his 13th place in the 15 k skate with a 15th place in the 30 k skiathlon at Under-23 World Championships – a solid showing, according to coaches, but by his own assessment missing the results goals he had set for himself. U.S. teammate Paddy Caldwell placed 20th, and Joanne Reid led the American women in 25th.
Arnaud Du Pasquier, a member of Colorado University’s 2014 squad to NCAA Championships, will be a senior next year. For now, though, he’s taking a year to complete his mandatory military service in his native Switzerland – which he’s doing by skiing full-time, including in the Nations Group at the Davos World Cups.
For reasons as wide-ranging as fairness of competition, stress on athletes, health of coaches, and saving money, several North American ski and biathlon organizations have policies limiting the use of high-fluoro waxes at some competitions. And they have nothing but positive feedback from their experiences.
For Some Countries, World University Games Offers Bragging Rights; For University of Wyoming, It’s the Trip of a Lifetime
You might see it as a missed development opportunity that the U.S. is the only country not to send its very fastest college athletes to the World University Games (we’ll explain why). But the Univerisity of Wyoming, races their hearts out, and also uses the opportunity for more than skiing: expanding athletes’ horizons, learning, and instilling a lifelong love of sport.
Twice each fall, the University of Alaska Anchorage’s nordic and alpine teams converge on their favorite sandbox for a sufferfest of sand-dune sprinting. “The family that plays together stays together and the ski team that suffers together can win together,” Kastning explains of their larger NCAA goals.
James Upham had a good run in Sochi: his Paralympic skiers won three medals – the first by U.S. women in 20 years – and before that at the Olympics Susan Dunklee, a college skier he had recruited to be a biathlete, turned in the best performance ever by a U.S. woman. Now he’s returning to his home of Maine as an assistant coach at Bates College.
Post-Biathlon, Studebaker Returns to the College Scene as Assistant Coach at University of Alaska Anchorage
Grethe Lise-Hagensen served as Montana State University’s Head Nordic Coach from 2003 to 2014. During her decade as head coach, Hagensen brought the team from a state of near non-existence to ranking third in the nation. In May of 2014, Hagensen’s contract was not renewed by the university’s administration. FasterSkier sat down with Hagensen in July to talk about her time at the helm of the MSU program and the accomplishments she achieved during her ten years as head coach.
Montana State University announced Friday that Kristina Trygstad-Saari will become the school’s nordic ski team head coach starting in August. This is the second job announcement in recent months for Trygstad-Saari as she was reported to be the Elite/Post-Graduate Team Coach of the Bridger Ski Foundation in May. She has since resigned from the position.
At the 2014 NCAA Championships, Kyle Bratrud was the first American in the 15 k classic. The result was the highlight of his college career to date. However, the skier is much more than his results suggest and the Minnesota native’s relationship with the sport shows that several strong influences from his coaches have helped him get where he is today.