Georgetown, Colo. Nov. 11, 2001--European and U.S. World Cup skiers aretraining in Colorado alongside college and club teams as the NatureValley Alpine Cup races -- part of the new-this-winter Colorado Swingdesigned to maximize the presence of Europeans training here before thestart of continuous World Cup racing -- draw near at Loveland Ski Area.
For the U.S. skiers, slalom training goes on daily at Loveland whilegiant slalom and super G training are held at Copper Mountain. Theunseasonal snow drought in the American West, coupled with temperaturesthat still were in the 50s Sunday, has reduced skiing to trails coveredmostly by snowmaking;
"Things are good. We've been getting some good training," U.S. men'sSL/GS Head Coach Jesse Hunt said Sunday.
Women's Head Coach Marjan Cernigoj called conditions at Copper"absolutely outstanding, as good as it can be. We have a one-minute,20-second super G, a full-length race course. We've had very goodconditions to work in..."
He said eight or 10 inches of snow before dawn Thursday boostedconditions on top of Copper's extensive machine-made snow cover. WithCopper offering the lone super G course, Cernigoj said space is at apremium.
The Nature Valley Alpine Cup, representing the opening Nor Am races,begin Thursday with two days of slalom competition for men. The womenare scheduled to run SL Saturday and Sunday before the world Cup groupheads to Aspen for the Chevy Truck Aspen Winternational Nov. 22-26. Theschedule: Thursday (Nov. 22): women's giant slalom; Friday: men's GS;Saturday: women's slalom; Sunday-Monday: men's SL each day.
Hunt said eight U.S. men will run GS and six will be entered in theslalom. Six U.S. women will compete in each race at Aspen, Cernigojsaid.
For more information on the U.S. Ski Team, check out the U.S. Ski Team homepage