Local junior skiers to compete on Hahnenkamm
2016 Hahnenkamm Juniors
Patrick Coughlin (North Salem, New York; Burke Mountain Academy)
Ben Ritchie (Waitsfield, Vermont; Green Mountain Valley School)
Zane Worrell (Vail; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail)
Kaitlyn Harsch (Avon; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail)
A J Hurt (Carnelian Bay, California; Squaw Valley Ski Team)
Allie Resnick (Vail; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail)
PARK CITY, Utah — Before the U.S. Ski Team stars take to Kitzbuhel’s infamous Hahnenkamm downhill this weekend, up and coming athletes from the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association’s U16 National Training Group will compete in the Hahnenkamm Juniors Wednesday. The event features tech events on the world-renowned Ganslernhang, the site of the Hahnenkamm slalom.
The fabled Hahnenkamm races, scheduled for Friday through Sunday, are considered some of the most prestigious ski racing events in the world. The Hahnenkamm Juniors event gives top junior racers a taste of the atmosphere they may well experience in future years.
Last year was the first year the U.S. had participated in the event. The U.S. team finished second behind the home country team from Tirol. Six athletes will compete this year in individual giant slalom and slalom races before combining their times for an overall team finish. AJ Hurt (Carnelian Bay, California), Kaitlyn Harsch (Avon) and Allie Resnick (Vail) will ski for the women, with Ben Ritchie (Waitsfield, Vermont), Patrick Coughlin (North Salem, New York) and Zane Worrell (Vail) skiing for the men. USSA U16 NTG head coach John Cashman will lead the group. Other teams from Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Liechtenstein, Italy, Croatia and Slovenia are expected to compete.
“This is a unique opportunity for some of our best U16s to race on the Hahnenkamm slalom hill and soak up the atmosphere during World Cup week in Kitzbuhel,” said USSA Alpine Development Director Chip Knight. “The team format is exciting too because it will unite the U.S. athletes around a shared goal. We are looking forward to seeing how they all compete against their European peers.”
The team will be training nearby in Hinterreit, Austria after the Hahnenkamm Junior races. They plan to watch the World Cup slalom on Sunday before traveling to other competitions in Germany and France.