We’ve seen: American women advance in cross-country skiing

In a winter when most Americans can use the good news to lift their national spirits, we can find one – despite 4,000 miles from here – in snow-covered places like Italy, Switzerland, Germany and Finland. This is where the USA Women’s Cross Country Team comes in, led by the performances of the top competitors Jesse Digins And the Rosie BrennanIt opens up new frontiers in a sport that has long been dominated by European countries.

Since the first Winter Olympics in 1924, the United States has won only two Olympic medals in cross-country skiing: Brattleboro and Bill Koch won the silver in the 1976 Olympics, and 42 years later the women’s team won gold at the PyeongChang 2018 Games (for comparison, Norway) She has 121 Olympic medals in Scandinavian skiing, Russian and Soviet skaters have 109, Sweden and Finland each have 80 medals. Their medals link the United States to Slovenia; only Bulgaria has fewer, one).

While this year is not the year of the Winter Olympics, American women are making great strides in the World Cup List of cross-country races It was held mainly in Europe from November to March. The unprecedented individual and team performance showed that they were competing for the medal in Europe 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.

We find American women second (after Russia) in Ranking of the world championships this winterAnd we found Diggins and Brennan in first and second places in the World Cup singles standings. Historically, this doesn’t only happen to American cross-country skiers. But Diggins and Brennan burned, won races, or got close, and made history in the process. For example in the World Cup 10 km race in Val Müster, Switzerland, A. He finished the first and second pair – The first for American skiers who thawed snow by attacking other countries. If it were football, Degens and Brennan would have packed their bags in Tampa Bay. (For registration, the Super Bowl Cross Country Ski Championships will be held in China in March and the US team will leave.)

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Diggins and Brennan are not household names in the United States. So are their teammates such as Sophie Caldwell Hamilton, Hailey Swerpool and Julia Kern. Or her coach, Matt Whitcomb. But in southern Vermont and Massachusetts, which have a proud but low-key reputation for turning cross-country skaters internationally, many of the people associated with this women’s team are our neighbors.

The 29-year-old Diggins spent her formative years skiing, studying and training in it Stratton Mountain SchoolStratton Strong Boarding School VT is preferred by aspiring winter sports athletes. Caldwell Hamilton, 30, a resident of southern Vermont, grew up and still lives in Peru, Kern, 23, from Boston, where she grew up on ice in a man-made snow ring outside of town.

Whitcomb, who coached the women’s team for several years before she was promoted General coach of the American ski team last summer, Grew up in Worthington and skate competitively at Wahkunah Regional High School in Dalton.

In fact, the epidemic has placed an asterisk on the season. Some of the strongest teams, and Norway in particular, have played very few World Cup matches and this may or may not have opened up opportunities for all of the other competitors.

Nevertheless, American women make inspirational performances that can inspire young athletes and increase interest in the sport. On their level, these professional skaters and coaches like Tom Bradies and Bill Beliechix work tirelessly in the world – without the fame, salary, or unlimited funding associated with the most popular professional sports.

These skiers also know why inspiring young people who love to skate is important. Caldwell Hamilton returned home in Vermont during a final hiatus from the World Series and She ran a clinic for the Old Young Ski Association It speaks of a generous interest in the future of sport, be it competition or fun entertainment.

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The world of international figure skating is alien to many Americans who prefer their sports on the field, in stadiums, and in games that require offense and defense. Unfortunately, the World Cup races will not be broadcast in the United States this year. (You can find Norwegian and Swedish broadcast channels on YouTube.)

But Americans like to hang on to what we’re winning. So, psst! Here’s some good and inspiring news, America: American Women’s Cross Country Team.

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