Clubs across the nation work year round to groom athletes for success in the competitive skiing. The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association is recognizing two Nordic clubs for superior dedication to the progression of the sport in 2009.
Sun Valley Recognized for XC Work
The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation, under the leadership of Rick Kapala, received the 2009 Cross Country Club of the Year Award. With a broad pipeline that cultivates athletes from an introduction to the sport of cross country, all the way to a focus on Olympic development, Sun Valley exhibits a high level of dedication to sport that engages hundreds of athletes with cross country.
In the 2009 season Sun Valley SEF's athletes competed around the globe in World Championships, World U23 championships, and World Junior Championships. Additionally, six athletes from the club qualified for World Cup competitions.
Eau Claire Flying Eagle Named Jumping/Nordic Combined Club of the Year
Access to three new jumps, a hand tow to the top of the jumps, a snowcat groomer, and plans to put plastic in the jumps for summer training are just a few of the recent renovations which have singled out Eau Claire Flying Eagle as worthy of receiving the 2009 Jumping/Nordic Combined Club of the Year Award.
In 2009, the small club, which has five volunteer coaches, no paid staff, and great community support, held an annual tournament that drew over 100 participants. The club has also sent athletes to Junior World Championships and produced Junior Olympic champions.
Eau Claire Flying Eagle is a club committed to the growth of ski jumping through their renovations and its learn to ski and learn to fly programs, which have helped in developing multiple Junior Olympic Champions.
The clubs will be honored on the evening of May 15 in Park City at USSA's awards dinner.