The US Ski Team has hired Larry Poromaa to fill the position of Head Wax Technician for the upcoming season. Poromaa spent the last five years as the chief wax technician for the Swedish national team and has also waxed for Team Smigun. A contemporary of fellow Swedes Gunde Svan, Torgny Mogren and Christer Majbaeck, he raced on the World Cup from 1985 to 1993, finishing 5th in the 50K classic in Oslo in 1986.
Poromaa is replacing Roar Lillefjell, who has moved on to a position with Atomic Skis. Says Pete Vordenberg, US Ski Team Head Coach, â€œWe felt we needed to change the atmosphere of the service team. Roar is an incredible waxer and a great worker and will be a great addition to the Atomic Service squad. We are aiming to create a very cohesive team, and doing that is something Larry has done a good job with. His team of waxers is already hard at work.â€
Both Poromaa’s significant international experience and his leadership skills have impressed the US Ski Team. â€œThe experience one gets competing and waxing at all the specific World Cup venues is very hard to replicate,â€ says Vordenberg. â€œLarry has taken control of every aspect of service, and is already working hard on grinds, ski selection and the travel/race and testing schedule.â€
Skidsport.com, a Swedish ski website, reported that Poromaa seems happy about his decision to join the US squad, despite having previously stated in the Swedish magazine, GLID, that he wouldn’t be interested in waxing for another nation’s national team. â€œI have changed a little bit in that respect. I even hired a Norwegian for the Swedish wax team for Turin,â€ says Poromaa. Apparently the US Team is compensating the Swedish wax maestro well, making his decision easier. â€œWhen you look at the number of working days, it’s economically a better deal for me to wax for the American team.â€
The World Cup wax team, headed by Poromaa, will be traveling with the World Cup and attending training camps starting in Mid-October. The only North American races that these technicians will attend are the World Cup events in Canada in late January.
Joining the Swedish import on the World Cup tech team are Oleg Regalio, one of Poromaa's long time trusted service men and another former Team Smigun waxer, and second-year serviceman Peter Johansson, described by Vordenberg as â€œa great addition to the team atmosphere, a meticulous tester and hard worker.â€ Randy Gibbs is returning as the head Continental Cup serviceman, waxing domestically, as well as at the Junior World Championships and U23 World Championships to be held in Poland in February, and at Europa Cup events. Finally, the US Team has also added Zach Caldwell as a part-time service tech and 2010-specific grinder. Caldwell is in the process of shifting his stonegrinding business, Engineered Tuning, from Vermont to Whistler, British Columbia â€” the site of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
â€œEvery day all year round we review what is going well, what we must do better,â€ Vordenberg told FasterSkier. Having an experienced and skilled service crew is critical to success at the highest levels of the sport, and the US Ski Team has put together a team of technicians that can compete with rest of the world on daily basis.