Squaw Valley hosted the Ski Alpine World Cup over the weekend. Organizers say that one of the main goals of holding the race is to inspire the next generation. Our contributor Ky Plaskon spoke has the story.
Perched high above a sea of spectators on a slick slope of snow, is a thin nylon tent. Inside, the racer stomps her feet like a bull and bangs her polls together. Only a plastic start gate stands between her and the 600-foot drop. Her coach yells and she catapults herself toward the crowd.
Smashing into a plastic gate every second, switching foot to foot with awesome power.
The crowd gets louder and louder as athletes stretch across the line. A new racer does it every 2 minutes.
Watching in the crowd are young ladies like 11-year-old Katherine Truax, who is watching with binoculars.
“I kind of noticed that they skate out of the start to get a good start,” she said. “I just really wanna race at a high level.”
12-year-old Monica Griffith is from South Lake Tahoe: “I want to be a racer, instantly. I love skiing and I just wanna do it."
13-year old Sunny Strusinski has never seen a race in person.
"I want to do this when I am older. I am learning that you have to turn. It is so much fun. The energy is something I have never been through before."
15-year-old Anna Lee is from Portola:
“I am learning like how aggressive they are and to just go for it...They don’t care, they just go and they try their best.”
The World Cup winner was Mikaela Shiffrin. She said she was once one of those little girls. One of her only regrets was that she couldn’t spend more time with the next generation of racers.