Nearly 4,000 junior skiers and snowboarders, ages 11-19, are revving up for the annual U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association's (USSA) Chevy Truck Junior Olympic series, scheduled for February and March at 14 ski areas across the country.
Made possible by longtime U.S. Ski Team sponsor Chevy Trucks and administered by USSA, the series has become an annual rite ofpassage for juniors who love snow and are serious about fine-tuning their competitive skills. Conceived as part of USSA'sdevelopment program for its national alpine team, the Junior Olympic series expanded in 2000 to also include the rapidly growingsports of cross country, freestyle, jumping, nordic combined and snowboarding. The 2001 events kick off on Feb. 1 with the ChevyTruck Snowboard Western Region Mini Prix in Steamboat Springs, Colo.
"With the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Chevy Trucks is committed more than ever to helping support the athletes of theUnited States as they pursue their dreams of athletic excellence," said Chevy Truck National Advertising and Sales PromotionDirector Mac Whisner. "It is our hope that all young American ski and snowboard racers will advance one step closer to the ultimategoal: to be the best in the world."
Junior athletes qualify for the Chevy Truck series through Eastern, Rocky Central and Western Region events. Junior Olympic agegroups are defined by levels 1 (17-19), 2 (15-16), 3 (13-14) and 4 (11-12).
"It's exciting to have a multi-sport program where athletes from all sports have a sense of unity in these USSA events," said USSANational Competition Services Director Walt Evans. "Many of our current and past U.S. Team members, such as AJ Kitt, Bode Miller,Alison Powers, Eric Schlopy and Picabo Street, have come through this program."
Junior and youth skiers can learn more about the program by checking their sport on the USSA website at www.usskiteam.com.
2001 USSA's Chevy Truck Junior Olympic Series
Feb. 1-4, Snowboard Western Region Mini Prix, Steamboat Springs, Colo.
Feb. 26- Mar. 4, Jumping/Nordic Combined, Lake Placid, N.Y.
Mar. 2-5, Snowboard Eastern Region Mini Prix, Sugarloaf, Maine
Mar. 3-9, Alpine Rocky/Central Region Junior 1 & 2, Beaver Creek, Colo.
Mar. 3-11, Cross Country, Marquette, Mich.
Mar. 5-11, Alpine Eastern Region Junior 1 & 2, Sugarloaf, Maine
Mar. 7-12, Alpine Western Region Junior 1, Squaw Valley/Sugar Bowl, Calif.
Mar. 8-11, Freestyle, Big Mountain, Mont.
Mar. 8-11, Alpine Eastern Region Junior 3, Sunday River, Maine
Mar. 12-17, Alpine Rocky/Central Region Junior 3, Winter Park, Colo.
Mar. 15-19, Alpine Western Region Junior 3 & 4, Jackson Hole, Wyo.
Mar. 17-24, Alpine Western Region Junior 2, Mt. Bachelor, Ore.
Mar. 21-24, Alpine Rocky/Central Region Junior 4, Steamboat Springs, Colo.
Mar. 23-25, Alpine Eastern Region Junior 4 Festival, Stratton Mt., Vt.