Success on the slopes is a sister act for Park City moguls skiers
It was mid-January and Kasey Hogg was on the verge of accomplishing a dream she’s had ever since she can remember.
As a 17-year-old freestyle skier, the Parkite took home a third-place finish in dual moguls and a fourth-place finish in individual moguls at the U.S. selections competition in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, securing her spot at the World Cup event at Deer Valley Resort in early February.
The only thing that could’ve made the scenario even better was if her older sister, Madison, 19, could join her atop Champion Run at Deer Valley instead of waiting for her at the bottom of the hill. But Madison — one of the top youth skiers on the U.S. Freestyle NorAm Tour — had an off weekend during the U.S. selections and finished seventh in dual moguls and 10th in moguls.
Despite being best friends in life who do nearly everything together, it appeared that the most exciting moment in Kasey’s life would have to come when she would be apart from Madison.
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In the end, though, luck intervened. On Jan. 27, Madison received a call from FIS officials, notifying her that she was invited to compete at the World Cup with her sister. The officials cited her previous skiing success as the reason for the invite.
“It was crazy and such a good feeling to get that call,” Madison said. “I was so happy for Kasey, but then knowing that we would get to do it together made it so much more special. At the beginning of last summer, one of my long-term goals was to make a World Cup event, and it ended up becoming a short-term goal.”
Likewise, Kasey was not only thrilled for her sister, but also excited that they would be able to compete at a prestigious event in their backyard. The opportunity to compete against the best moguls skiers in the world at Deer Valley was something that they would never forget.
“It was pretty crazy because they usually have World Cups on TV, and I’ve always watched (the athletes) so being able to compete against them was pretty cool,” Kasey said. “I felt like we’ve seen all of them compete in TV so competing against them in person was pretty cool, especially at that level of competition.”
Although neither of the sisters made it the finals of the moguls or dual moguls at Deer Valley, they were each able to showcase their talent. Madison outdueled her sister and took home a 17th-place finish in dual moguls, while Kasey got the better of her sister and took home 19th in moguls.
“I feel like we’ve gotten to this top level just because we have truly have fun skiing, especially doing it together,” Madison said. “A lot of other kids don’t have siblings — we know a couple that do — but it makes it a lot more fun and easier to go compete and travel so much when you have someone with you. We are best friends and do pretty much everything together.”
Apart from competing in the World Cup, the pair has dominated the NorAm tour — which is widely considered the stepping stone or prelude to the World Cup tour. Madison recently took home the 2020 NorAm season championship, while Kasey finished second, qualifying them to compete in the World Cup finals in Sweden on Saturday.
They’ve racked up 17 combined podium finishes in the last two seasons alone — including four gold medals. Madison was the 2019 U.S. junior national champion while Kasey is currently ranked 27th in the world in moguls in the current FIS standings.
“I feel like we just push each other to be better, not just in skiing but also in life and in everything that we do,” Kasey said. “If she feels good, I’m extremely happy for her and vice versa. Even though we do the same competitions, we aren’t insanely competitive with each other, which some people might find weird. We are way more supportive for everything in life.”
Before the sisters moved to Park City in July 2015 and found success on the slopes, they grew up in New Hampshire.
Every Friday night, the family would pack into the car and drive two and a half hours to Killington, Vermont, to train and ski for the weekend. Through their training and competing in Vermont, the girls qualified for the 2014 and 2015 U.S. Junior National Championships in Park City — trips that made the family fall in love with the snowy mountain town.
“The entire family loved Park City so much we decided to move here,” said Scott Hogg, their father. “… So we sold the house, I quit my job, and we packed everything up and moved from New Hampshire to Park City. We did it so the kids could train and compete and enjoy all that Utah has to offer. It was definitely the right move and has been successful athletically, educationally and socially for them.”
With no clue on how the rest of their lives will play out — Madison is currently a freshman in the Business Scholars Program at the University of Utah, while Kasey is an upcoming senior at the Winter Sports School — both girls know that being together on the slopes will be a part of it.
“We definitely don’t want to ski forever, at least not competitively,” Madison said. “When we eventually stop competing, it’ll turn into a recreational thing where we stay together on the snow forever.”
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It’s going to be at least another month before Summit County’s high school athletes have any chance of getting onto the field again.