A Chat with French Ski Racer Tessa Worley

Snow King Resort—Jackson, Wyoming’s town ski hill—is camp to some of France’s Olympic ski racers, who are training out of the public eye until the technical ski events begin in Vancouver. We chatted with French racer and first-time Olympian Tessa Worley, who'll be competing in the GS in Whistler, after some morning training runs about lucky underwear, cowboys, the English word for pick-up truck.
Tessa from France

Have you met any cowboys here in Wyoming yet?
Not yet, but I want to! Maybe tonight—we might go into the town and…I heard about some cowboy bars. But I am only 20, so I don’t know how that will work in the bar.

The cowboys go to the Silver Dollar in town tonight, there’s a band they like to dance to—maybe they will let you in, since you are an Olympian. Does the team even drink any alcohol right now?
No, no beer or anything right now, it is a bit serious training. It’s fun, and sometimes we have a beer with the whole team too, but we are working now.

Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions?
No, not really superstitious, but I have some things…um, I have some underwear that works good—and things like this.

When you are not racing, where is your favorite place for freeskiing?
I think it is my home, Le Grand Bornand, in Annecy, in the French Alps, where maybe will be the 2018 Olympics.

Are you going to freeski here?
I would like to ski here, I don’t think on this trip, but maybe another time. My father always wanted to come and ski in Jackson Hole so he was very glad for me to come here.

Ski touring and mountaineering is really popular here in this area. Do you ever climb and ski routes yourself?
No never before! I think climbing up will be a bit…hard. I like better to go down. Fast. [Tessa laughs. Of course she does. That’s why she’s an Olympic ski racer.]

If you could drive any kind of car at all what would it be?
Hmmm. A mini Cooper—I love these cars! But it is a bit small for skis…right now I have an Audi but I used to have one of those…what are they called? [She points to a pick-up truck in the parking lot.] It was good to throw everything in the back but it was hard to park.


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