NewsNNF: Map Monday, Matt Whitcomb, and Kate Barton

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The Big Dog Hunts

Matt Whitcomb Weighs In

 

It’s fourth down. Our single largest chance to make a difference for cross country skiing in the U.S. is right now.  The next opportunity will be one year from now, and who has patience for that?
The way it works in the N.N.F. community in the U.S. is that we reach our goal. We see the number and we get it. We’ll do it again. It works that way because you all are motivated, connected, and influential. It works because the N.N.F. has great leaders and a handful of very faithful major donors that create matching challenges to stimulate the masses.
But how boring – to reach a goal.
Let’s annihilate our goal. Let’s make something happen that involves us all, and with a reach that shocks us all.  Let’s accomplish something that stands our hair up, that we remember twenty years later as the moment we became unstoppable.
If you are inspired, go wild. Lay down a massive donation. Or create a page. Recruit more people than you are comfortable contacting to donate to your page.  You can do it because you have a story to tell – of hard working skiers with world class motivation, with a great need for both fan and financial support.
This is our chance. There are already enough of us to kick this into gear, but we all have to stand up. Nobody seated. Right now, off the couch, out of your chair, together.  Will you stand with us?

 

Matt Whitcomb with Kikkan Randall celebrating some well earned hardware.

 

What Racing in Europe Does for Development

Kate Barton: What These Trips Do

 

As the head coach at Burke Mountain Academy and a multiple time trip leader for the U18 Scando Cup trip, as well as staff to the World Junior Championships, Kate Barton has seen NNF funded skiing development first hand. Here’s what she explained as the result of dollars spent:

 

1. The first time. For most athletes, this is their first ski racing trip overseas and for many their first high level international competition.  Exposure to this kind of event is the first step to creating comfort and confidence on the international level in the future.
2. The coaches. Exposure to this kind of event and this level of racing is as eye opening and motivating for us as much as it is for the kids.  The process of developing athletes is long and involved, and watching the kids ski fast and succeed at this level is a big deal.
3. The truth. Many of the athletes who qualify are coming off of a high based on their performance at US Nationals and this competition helps to bring them back toward the ground, reminding them that there is still a lot of work to be done.  The kids make a shift in focus to getting stronger, faster, fitter because exposure to a higher level of racing reignites the idea that this is an ongoing process.  It doesn’t end in Houghton or Salt Lake. If they have a future in ski racing this is crucial and will benefit them.
4. Experiencing success is important. You can benefit from learning to win.  Getting on the podium at U-18 championships proves our athletes can succeed at a high level in international junior racing.  As these athletes progress in their racing opportunities, to World Juniors, U-23’s and the World Cup, they can remind themselves of this performance and the fact that theybelong here.  They’ve been here and they’ve been successful.  Its hard to break through, but the earlier and more often you do it the easier it gets.  Now, athletes can believe in the success and go after more!

 

Kate Barton (l) with Nick Mahood readying skis at Junior Nationals.
Support the Drive today. Help US skiing get more chances at International Competition before the first World Cup start.

 

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