A great weekend at the Freestyle NorAm Finals-Two Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes win overall NorAm Series and earn invitation to US Freestyle Team for Next Season
Hundreds and hundreds of Ski & Snowboard Club Vail volunteer and staff hours in off-snow preparation and weeks and weeks of Ski & Snowboard Club Vail freestyle coach and athlete time building and rebuilding the moguls course on Cookshack are just a few of the things that went into creating a phenomenal experience for over 100 freestyle mogul athletes from around the world that competed in this past weekend’s Ascent Sotheby’s Vail Freestyle NorAm Finals. These finals hosted by Ski & Snowboard Club Vail were the culmination of a three part series which started in Stratton, Vermont, moved on to Val St. Come, Quebec and ended at Apex in British Columbia.
When asked about how the NorAm finals were going after the first day of competition, Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Freestyle Program Director and coach John Dowling shared, “I am very excited about the competitor field including a bronze medalist from the last Olympic Games and really strong competition from Australia and Canada.”
The NorAm Freestyle tour is conducted for the top U.S. and Canadian development skiers just below the World Cup level with additional positions for other foreign competitors. If the winner of the tour is a US athlete, this results in an invitation for them to join the US Freestyle Team next season. Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes Morgan Schild and Dylan Walczyk did just that, crowned winners of the series at a medal celebration at Solaris Plaza late Sunday afternoon.
Schild, still in high school, impressed throughout the NorAm tour. Dowling could not have been prouder as he recounted Morgan’s successes. It is clear she has a bright future in this sport, achieving this level of success at such a young age. A more seasoned veteran of the NorAm circuit, current Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athlete and US Freestyle Team member Dylan Walczyk is another source of great pride for Dowling. “It was an exciting day because there was so much riding on it” shared John on Saturday evening as he discussed these two SSCV athletes who won the NorAm series.
Not only did Dowling have athletes standing at the top of the podium at the series end, but he also reflected on the depth of the Ski & Snowboard Club Vail team. “It was great for the SSCV freestyle team to have so many of our athletes involved in the event.” John went on to name the SSCV athletes who competed this past weekend: Hannah Miles, Morgan Schild, Erin Coyne, Taryn Baker, Lindsey Eckhoff, Emerson Smith, Dylan Walczyk, Alex DeBonville, Chris Leseur, Matt Leseur and Hunter Bailey.
SSCV athletes enjoyed some personal bests right here on home turf. It was a great weekend event with a festive atmosphere and great viewing at Cookshack. With much gratitude Dowling shared, “It is really great to have the backing of Vail Resorts to be able to have these kinds of events to support our athletes.”