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USA Skimo National Team is “Sizzling”

It’s that time of the year. Almost time to strap on carbon ski boots and climb the mountains. 

USA Skimo National Team athletes are ready for USA Skimo, the organization, to take the next step in developing a team competitive in world-level racing. Individual athletes performed magnificently during the last World Cup and European Championships: Cam Smith was the first non-Euro senior male to ever podium at a World Cup, Grace Staberg with 2 Vertical wins plus 2 podiums in Individual races, Griffin Briley, U18, was first across the finish line at both the Vertical and Individual European Championships.  Never before have US athletes performed to this level in skimo.  USA Skimo as an organization needs a major transformation, from a small sport with very little visibility and support to athletes, to form an Olympic winning team. 

New for the ‘22-23 US National Team, we are developing from a 5-month team focused on the race season to a 12-month team building athlete performance throughout the year.  Year-round engagement creates team cohesion and improves individual efforts to train throughout the year.  As the team manager and chair of the US National Team Committee, I am committed to providing athletes with training and race opportunities. We are developing methods and protocols for supporting our athletes financially, with health care and coaching to improve athlete performance.  We have a real opportunity to win medals at the Winter Games 2026.  If we support our athletes in training, racing and team management, they will increase their performance.  Our athletes are hungry to win.   

High performance initiatives are not possible without your support. USA Skimo is at the crossroads of significant individual athlete performance and the need for professional coaching, athlete support and team management.  Additional key indicators that our athletes have the potential to win medals at the Winter Games 2026 include the numerous youth development volunteer coaches and programs at Dartmouth College, Snowbasin UT, Brighton UT, Park City UT,  and Summit County CO.  To remain an Olympic sport after the Winter Games 2026, the sport has to grow beyond a Euro-centric sport.  ISMF and the IOC are working on that.  Please help us grow the number of US skimo fans.  We need more mass in USA Skimo to enlarge our donor base and improve brand exposure for our sponsors.  Without such growth, we won’t raise sufficient money to build an organization that can add performance value to athlete abilities.  So, bring a friend to the races!  

See you on the skin track,

Comments(3)

  1. Patrick says:

    Thank you for your commitment to growing the sport and the national team Milan. Keep up the good work!

  2. Bobby O. says:

    [I wrote this on IG initially, I did not realize there was a comment section.]

    I’ll post it here brief, but in short, the team is selected before winter even starts, and selected at a resort that is obscure and BFE out of the way (with all due respects towards Sunlight). There is no real honest chance for a West Coast contingency or a Beast Coast cohort. It’s sort of a have’s-have’s of Colorado versus everyone else. By the time the team is selected, the snow hasn’t even fallen legitimately in the PNW or East, let alone The Sierra. And SLC in all honesty has the best chance of landing anyone on a podium in the Olympics.

    SLC is the future of USASKIMO in my visions.. Right from the University in town you can hop off a tram and walk across two city blacks, dawn your skis, and head straight up into the Wasatch. Combined with big city diversity and we have ourselves collegiate and professional teams in the works; much like NAU and Flagstaff.

    But right now, the heart and soul of USASKIMO is in Summit County, CO and doesn’t host an honest team tryout for the nation to showcase it’s Randoneé.

    *Sidenote, since I wrote a f’ton anyways, I’ll do a digression. I find the US (of all places) to abandon the term Skimo — due to Inuit tribes and the racial slur of “Eskimo” — and us (the US) reclaiming Randoneé once again. Mark my words.

    Totally not trying to be a curmudgeon, btw. I’m just bringing up some points to arguments that maybe no one has stated. Having this is way better than not having this – the ISMF and USASKIMO. I’ve actually wanted to be a member on the USASKIMO board as I’ve got a ton of ideas for events and projects.

    Shoutout to the skintrack mafia and all that you guys do!

  3. Kerry Hanes says:

    Bobby O,
    Thank you for your interest in how USA Skimo determines who makes the US National Team (USNT). The Race Committee and USNT Committee coordinate with Local Organizing Committees (LOC) to identify candidate races and choose races that provide the greatest opportunity to the greatest number of racers. From your comment, it sounds like you’re in the Pacific Northwest. Alpental, WA hosts a USA Skimo National Cup Series race on March 4th. I hope to see you there! We do need more races in the PNW. Any chance you’d like to organize a race in your area? We need more LOCs and associated fan base outside of the core skimo areas you identified.
    Additionally, the USNT term was once 2-years with only a winter focus and is now a 1-year term with year-round training and events. The USNT athletes are now selected at the end of the race season, instead of early winter as you noticed prior to 2021. USA Skimo now selects USNT athletes based on results from multiple races on different dates throughout the season. This year, selection races are scheduled in Colorado, New Mexico, Montana, Washington & Utah. Our goal is to field the most competitive, inclusive and engaging group of athletes. I invite you to follow your dream, call me if you’d like more assistance positioning yourself for the USNT.
    Sincerely,
    Milan Kubala
    USNT Committee Chair

    Bobby O.,
    It’s unfortunate that you draw a correlation between “skimo” and a slur. “Skimo” is a contraction of “ski” and “mountaineering”. There’s absolutely no relation between “skimo” and the slur.
    Sincerely,
    Kerry Hanes
    Development & Fundraising Chair

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