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Zach Caldwell

Freeman Retools Mass-Start Strategy, Considers CamelBak

Tell Kris Freeman something he doesn’t know about racing with diabetes. Better yet, give him hope that he can ski faster. That’s exactly how Dr. Jim Stray-Gundersen piqued Freeman’s interest two months ago in Norway. Without having seen him race, Stray-Gundersen got right to the point in Oslo. Forget about what happened in the past; let’s look to the future. How do you feel about racing with a CamelBak? For Freeman and his personal coach...

With consecutive World Cup weekends of season best results, Kris Freeman has turned his year around after a challenging start. The top distance skier on the American men’s team cracked the top-15 for the first time this season, placing 13th in the 30km skiathlon in Rybinsk, Russia, finishing just 1.2 seconds out of the top-10 and 6.1 off the podium. The result came a day after placing 28th in the 15km mass start, a race...

OBERHOF, Germany – If there’s anything positive about Kris Freeman’s struggles in the first half of the 2012 season, it’s that they haven’t been too much of a mystery to him. Through nine competitions this season, Freeman’s head has been “everywhere but racing,” as a result of a big change in his personal life: Just before he departed for Europe, he and his girlfriend parted ways after 10 years together. Following a week of rest...

FasterSkier Podcast: Tech Roundtable Part 2

Part 2 of the FasterSkier Tech Roundtable. In what may be a first in the North American skiing, FasterSkier brought together four of the best ski technicians around for a roundtable discussion on a variety of issues. Nathan Schultz of Boulder Nordic Sport, Mark Waechter of Nordic Ultratune, Zach Caldwell of Caldwell Sport, and Patrick Moore of the Alberta World Cup Academy digitally joined FasterSkier Editor Topher Sabot and Associate Editor Audrey Mangan from all...

FasterSkier Podcast: Tech Roundtable Part 1

In what may be a first in the North American skiing, FasterSkier brought together four of the best ski technicians around for a roundtable discussion on a variety of issues. Nathan Schultz of Boulder Nordic Sport, Mark Waechter of Nordic Ultratune, Zach Caldwell of Caldwell Sport, and Patrick Moore of the Alberta World Cup Academy digitally joined FasterSkier Editor Topher Sabot and Associate Editor Audrey Mangan from all corners of the continent. The discussion is...

Zach Caldwell’s role within the ski industry is hard to define. In trying to come up with a single phrase to describe his job, ‘ski technician’ isn’t nearly sufficient, as it doesn’t quite capture everything he is—structure designer, snow whisperer, wax chemist, engineer, ski evangelist, and occasional coach (he calls it his “hobby,” as if working with Kris Freeman and Noah Hoffman were as ordinary a pastime as fly fishing). Caldwell’s expertise in everything from kinetic...

Zach Caldwell, one of the premier ski technicians in the US has decided to leave Boulder Nordic Sport (BNS) and return to Southern Vermont to reestablish his own grinding and ski selection business with his wife Amy. Caldwell initially left Vermont to run a ski testing program for the US Ski Team in the Callaghan Valley as part of the lead up to the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, following Amy to the Whistler area after...

In the lead-up to the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, Zach Caldwell led a much-discussed, multi-year effort to pin down the best stonegrinds and waxes for the challenging, variable conditions at Whistler Olympic Park. Caldwell’s months and months of hard work even drew the attention of National Public Radio, which Kris Freeman’s horrific skis in the opening 15 k freestyle in Vancouver. When the best skiers and wax techs in the world can be baffled by conditions,...

On-Board Computer Completes Freeman Cyborg Transformation

Kris Freeman, the U.S.’s top male distance skier, will have a cutting-edge on-board computer system implanted into his skull this summer, completing his transformation into a race-winning cyborg. Freeman, a type one diabetic, has been racing for the last year with the help of two devices: a continuous glucose monitor and an insulin pump. Those products have helped him render the effects of his disease all but moot. But the computer, constructed by his longtime...

Freeman Fends Off Challengers to Take 14th National Title

No, he probably didn’t have what it takes to beat Petter Northug—nor even Marcus Hellner, for that matter. But on Saturday in Sun Valley, Kris Freeman (USST) wasn’t racing those guys. Instead, he was pitted against the North American domestic field in the U.S. National Championship in the 50 k, with a race plan that could perhaps be best described as “don’t mess it up.” He didn’t, despite tricky waxing conditions, and one gambit that...

Preview: Freeman Headlines U.S. 50 K Champs., But Others Lurk

Kris Freeman (USST) will be the odds-on favorite to win Saturday’s U.S. national championship in the 50 k classic. But the way his last two seasons wrapped up, just making it to the start line in Sun Valley, ID, is a victory in and of itself. In late March, 2009, Freeman was recuperating from surgery on his legs to relieve the debilitating symptoms of exertional compartment syndrome; he had been forced to end his season...

Blood Sugar Management and Final Climb Highlight Freeman’s Tour

Kris Freeman wasn’t satisfied with his overall ranking at the 2011 Tour de Ski, in which he finished 28th, 13-and-a-half minutes behind overall winner Dario Cologna. But one thing that was satisfactory? In fact, close to perfect? Freeman’s blood sugar management, as evidenced by the fact that he was able to ski to seventh place in the final climb on the last day of the Tour—less than a minute behind winner Lukas Bauer, and just...

With Help from Caldwell, Freeman Chases Down a Dose

Kris Freeman does not give up easily. Freeman, an American cross-country skier, has weathered a diagnosis of type one diabetes—which, for the careers of most endurance athletes, would have been a death sentence. He has picked himself up from a snowbank and finished a race at the Olympics after passing out on the side of the trail from hypoglycemia. He has pushed through two surgeries on his lower legs to relieve the debilitating symptoms of...

Noah Hoffman: A Step Taken, and Ready for More

Last year, Noah Hoffman was just another young athlete on the U.S. Ski Team’s Continental Cup squad. He was in the pipeline, developing towards a bright future, and wrapped up the season with a couple of SuperTour podiums, a fifth-place finish at U.S. Nationals, and a great race in Switzerland that nobody heard about. At SuperTour Finals, he finished second in the hill climb, his most high-profile domestic result of the year. In other words,...

After a half hour of skiing Saturday, Kris Freeman had earned himself $500, 29 World Cup points, and one top-10 finish. By his own account, Freeman’s ninth place in the season-opening 15 k freestyle in Gallivare was “a hell of a day,” and it was the top finish for the American men. Noah Hoffman followed with a stellar 31st, while Andy Newell and Chris Cook turned in lackluster results in 87th and 102nd, respectively. Freeman...

The nation’s biggest clubs have likely seen an influx of applications this spring, after the U.S. Ski Team (USST) cast off several athletes and eliminated its domestic waxing staff. But there was at least one athlete who didn’t throw his hat into the ring: Noah Hoffman. Instead of joining a heavyweight club like Alaska Pacific University or Sun Valley, Hoffman will stay affiliated with his home program, the Aspen Valley Ski Club (AVSC). “I reviewed...

Man vs. Wild: Zach Caldwell Takes On the 2010 Olympic Venue

Editor’s Note: Portions of this article were removed at the request of the US Ski Team, which believed that sensitive information included in the piece could impact its medal chances.  FasterSkier does not generally grant such requests and will not do so in the future, and we would not have done so if we believed the material in the article to be of critical import to the skiing community.  While we did not agree that...