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US Ski Team coach brings legendary skills to Queenstown club

September 14, 2013 Ski No Comments Email Email

Young Queenstown ski racers will benefit from the best coaching advice in the world following an exclusive clinic held recently at Coronet Peak.
Head coach of the US men’s alpine ski team Sasha Rearick led a clinic with five Queenstown Alpine Ski Team coaches, demonstrating drills and techniques that have resulted in multiple Olympic and World Cup medals for his athletes.Sasha and QAST team_media

Rearick demonstrated drills that he and US Olympic and World Champion Ted Ligety have created and applied to the US team, discussed trends of current World Cup techniques and showed QAST coaches how to prepare athletes for new regulation Giant Slalom (GS) skis.

The tips and advice that have seen ski legends such as Ligety, Bode Miller, Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso win multiple golds and podium placings are now being filtered through to the 65 season-long athletes aged 8 to 18 who attend QAST.

Sasha and QAST coaches discussing technique after a run down Hurdle to T-BarQAST chairman James Hadley said they were “absolutely thrilled” to have had the opportunity to spend the day with Rearick.

“The US team’s arguably the premier team in Alpine ski racing in the world at the moment,” he said.

“Our coaches were obviously very excited to be with Rearick and learn podium-winning techniques.”

He said the clinic perfectly matched QAST’s range of new objectives for the 2013 season including getting professional development opportunities for coaches.

“We’re conscious that our young athletes are very fortunate to train alongside international superstar athletes at Coronet Peak’s Rocky Gully.Head coach Sasha Rearick (centre front) in coaching session on Coronet peak

“It’s awesome that we were able to take the relationship from beyond shared lift rides and greetings to a more professional level this season via the session with Sasha and deliver on this objective in partnership with NZSki.”

Mr Rearick, who cancelled a heliski trip with Bode Miller to take the clinic, told coaches he felt there had been a marked improvement in QAST this season and was very complimentary about standards set by QAST head coach Igor Stros and his team.

Mr Stros said he was impressed with Rearick’s readiness to share his secrets and give up his time for what he described as the best professional seminar he’d ever had in his career.

“It was invaluable to hear and see what Rearick determined as critical in ski racing overall and particularly in GS,” he said.

Coronet Peak Performance Centre Manager Toby Arnott, who organised the clinic, said Coronet Peak had a strong commitment to helping the next generation of ski racers.

“Recent developments in the Rocky Gully area ensure we attract top international athletes and teams such as the US ski team each season,” he said.

“One of the benefits is that we can facilitate training and development for our local coaches.”

Former New Zealand ski team member and national title winner Tim Cafe, now a coach with QAST, said he was “inspired” by Rearick’s attitude and knowledge.

“Since the clinic we’ve put many of the stance drills into practice and are already seeing major changes in the kids’ skiing,” he said.

“It’s great to see that someone with such knowledge and experience taking the time to run a clinic and share information like that for a local club.”

Queenstown Alpine Ski Team (QAST) is a community based non-profit incorporated society dedicated to providing the opportunity for children and adolescents to learn and excel in ski racing.

For more information go to www.qast.org.nz/qast/

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