Locals head to Junior World Championships | VailDaily.com

Locals head to Junior World Championships

VAIL — Four locals have earned invites to compete at this year's FIS Alpine Junior World Ski Championships.

Locals Nellie Rose Talbot, Alex Leever, Nina O'Brien and Florian Szwebel will represent the U.S. in Sochi at Junior Worlds starting Wednesday and concluding March 5. The team will look to carry the momentum from last year's Junior World Ski Championships and build upon solid podiums posted by fellow Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athlete Paula Moltzan, who won gold in slalom, and A.J. Ginnis, of Waitsfield, Vermont, who took bronze in the slalom.

The United States Ski and Snowboard Association said the FIS Alpine World Junior Championships are a unique opportunity for the best 16-20 year-olds of the skiing world to compete together, and are important competitions in the development of future World Cup contenders.

Only age eligible (year of birth 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 1999) licensed United States Ski and Snowboard Association and FIS athletes in good standing with a valid U.S.A. passport are eligible for consideration.

"Congratulations to all the athletes who have earned the right to be on this year's World Junior Championships team," said Chip Knight, Alpine Development Director at the United States Ski and Snowboard Association. "This is an experienced group of young athletes with some outstanding Continental Cup results to their names so far this year. As a nation, we will be aiming for podium performances and a strong showing overall in the Hodler Cup."

Last year, the team was ninth in the standings for the Marc Hodler trophy for overall team performance.