PARK CITY, UT (Sept. 3) – After four Continental Cup events in August, the USA’s Sarah Hendrickson (Park City, UT) leads the tour by 29 points. While the Park City teen has her sights set on the World Championships in Oslo, Norway this February, she is going to take a break from the fall tour to focus on the classroom.
“This summer in Germany, I jumped well. I have jumped better, but I had consistent strong jumps, which helped with my overall ranking,” said Hendrickson. “By jumping into the top six almost every comp, my points added up quickly, putting me first in the overall ranking.”
Hendrickson, started off the 2010-11 season strong with a victory, marking her second career Continental Cup win, and and two podium finishes in third. Combining three podiums and one top 10, Hendrickson’s consistency put her in the overall lead. Two other U.S. athletes jumped into the top 10 overall rankings behind Hendrickson. Abby Hughes (Park City, UT) is shy of the top five in seventh with 136 points, while Alissa Johnson (Park City, UT) is in 10th with 100 points.
Hendrickson, who has been attending high school in Park City in between competitions, has been busy with being a normal teenager and professional athlete. At 16 years old, she travels the world competing on the women’s ski jumping circuits, but while at home, she is balancing training and soccer practice.
“My goal for this upcoming winter, since I am not going to Norway this fall, is to compete well,” said Hendrickson. “I would love to make the World Champs Team and be able to do well. Since the U.S. has such a strong team, it is not easy making these trips. You have to jump well everyday to compete, which makes this sport that much better!”
With summer over for high school students, she is joining fellow students in the classroom. Although she is not competing in the September Continental Cups, she is confident that come December she will be soaring through the sky and stomping her landings.
“Having a good world ranking really helps the metal part of the competition,” Hendrickson said. “Now I know in my head that I can have good jumps in competition and have my results show it.”
The next Continental Cup is set for mid-September in Lillehammer, Norway. The event will be followed by three more European competitions before a two month break with the circuit picking up again in December.
The women will jump in the FIS Nordic Ski World Championships begin Feb. 25 on the new 106-meter (HS106) at Holmenkollen in Oslo, Norway. Hendrickson’s teammate Lindsey Van (Park City, UT) is the defending world champion.