World Cup Win Boosts Randall to Cross Country Athlete of Year
Another athlete who marked her page in ski history, Kikkan Randall (Anchorage) was the recipient of the 2008 USSA Cross Country Athlete of the Year award.
Randall adapted a “no guts, no glory” mentality in the 2008 season, which led her to become the first U.S. woman in the 27-year history of cross country World Cup to win. She grabbed a victory at the the Rybinsk, Russia sprint event in December. It also was the first U.S. victory since Bill Koch in 1983.
Randall, who first made history 2006 when she became the first U.S. woman to break the top three of a World Cup cross country race, is a true inspiration to American cross country skiers. Her win serves as a milestone by which future cross country skiers will measure their success.
Demong Recognized as Nordic Combined Athlete of the Year
Bill Demong (Vermontville, NY), who added to the historic U.S. Ski Team season in 2008, was the Nordic Combined Athlete of the Year. Demong took six World Cup podiums, including a win, to become the first American to finish in the top three in the season long standings. Demong then went on to win the backcountry.com U.S. Nordic Combined Championships.
After a serious swimming pool accident five years ago, Demong showed true athletic determination in his quest to battle back to the top, and proved himself as a world-class athlete with his successful World Cup season in 2008.
Vonn Takes Top Honors
Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO), who rewrote the history of women's alpine skiing in the United States throughout the 2008 season, is being honored with the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association's (USSA) 2008 USSA Beck International Award. The Beck is the USSA's highest athletic award presented to a competitor for outstanding performance in international competition during the past season.