Alpine World Championships team named
With the start of the 2015 Alpine World Championships in Vail/Beaver Creek, Colorado, only a couple days away, the U.S. Ski Team announced who would make up the men’s and women’s squads on Wednesday afternoon.
The 13-day event will be held Feb. 2-15, with competitions beginning on Feb. 3.
Many of alpine skiing’s biggest stars will take to the slopes for the U.S., including Park City native Ted Ligety. Alpine Coach Patrick Riml said he’s thrilled to have so many of the top U.S. athletes healthy and ready to compete.
"I think we have an unbelievably strong team that is led by Lindsey Vonn, Mikaela Shiffrin, Ted Ligety and Bode Miller," he said on a conference call Wednesday afternoon. "I’m really liking the situation we’re in right now, having all our top athletes there."
In addition to Ligety, Park City will be represented by Megan McJames, who calls the town home, too. Park City Ski Team alumni Steven Nyman, Tim Jitloff and Haley Duke will also suit up for Team USA.
Ligety, who will be defending the three gold medals he won at the 2013 World Championships in Austria, said he’s happy to have the competition on American soil this time around.
"It’s awesome having the World Champs in the U.S.," he said in a U.S. Ski Team press release. "It’s something I’ve never experienced before, so it’s going to be a lot of fun having a big event in the U.S. It’s always nice to take the Euros out of their element a little bit and have them living in their duffel bags for a couple of weeks as opposed to always being the North Americans. Beaver Creek has always done an amazing job preparing hills for us and it’s been a place where I’ve had a good amount of success as well."
For Shiffrin and Vonn, both of whom call Vail home, the comfort level is even higher.
"I’m obviously really excited to compete in my hometown," Shiffrin said in a conference call. "Just competing at home and sleeping in my own bed and feeling so comfortable, it’s like skiing at a U16 race. It allows me to ski very freely. I’m looking forward to a similar feeling in the GS and slalom."
With all the excitement surrounding the next couple weeks, including an unprecedented amount of live television coverage courtesy of NBC, Riml said the U.S. athletes can’t wait to take to the snow and show what they’re made of.
"We’re all super excited to be able to compete on our home turf," he said. "Everybody can’t wait to get to Beaver Creek and put on a show for the whole country."
"I think it’s one of those things that will go down in all of our memories as a really great event," Shiffrin added. "It really is a familiar place to everybody. I think each of us has really high goals for these championships — it’s going to be interesting."
Competitions begin Tuesday with the women’s super G and end on Sunday, Feb. 15, with the men’s slalom.
U.S. World Championships Team
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