Pacesetters at National Championships
03.07.2017 | Bill Madsen
As a Lake Tahoe native, Marco learned to ski on some of the most legendary terrain in the world. With 16 years on the U.S. Ski Team under his belt, Marco has competed in five World Championships and is a four-time Olympian. This year, Marco traveled with NASTAR to various Pacesetting Trials and Regional Championships across the nation.
A four-time Olympian, AJ Kitt has become a living legend at NASTAR Nationals as well as the NASTAR Pacesetting Trials. After 11 years on the U.S. Ski Team’s World Cup circuit, he traveled as a National Pacesetter for over 15 years. His consistent skiing style has earned him a reputation as a power skier. AJ is a great ambassador for the NASTAR program and he is always happy to share his knowledge of the sport with recreational racers.
The most decorated male American Downhiller and Super G skier in history, Daron Rahlves, might be an athletic animal but guess where his roots were planted? In a NASTAR course at Alpine Meadows alongside his parents and his grandparents every Saturday during the winter. Daron has won 12 World Cup races, had 28 World Cup podium spots and seven U.S. National Titles on top of four Olympic game appearances.
A Minnesota native, Claire Brown grew up bashing gates under the lights at Buck Hill before joining the University of Denver Pioneers where she earned NCAA All-American honors and helped her team win two National Championships. After graduating with a degree in finance and marketing, she relocated to Park City and now enters her seventh season at Ski Racing Magazine.
Travis Ganong (injured)
Travis grew up only minutes away from Squaw Valley and has raced for the U.S. Ski Team for 12 years specializing in speed events. Two-time World Cup winner, Ganong started the 2016 season off with a bang in Lake Louise, finishing 3rd in downhill and 4th in super G. He has gone on to snag six top 10 World Cup finishes and this season, he had to sit out the Olympics due to a season ending knee injury.
After a storied 18-year career, Olympic champion Julia Mancuso hung up her tiara and took a victory lap in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy this season. Mancuso’s first FIS Ski World Cup was in 1999, and her first World Cup podium was a super-G silver in Cortina. Known for her renegade style and her ability to perform on the big stage, Mancuso donned a tiara on the podium in 2006 and 2010 when she won Olympic gold and silver.
Ted is the official NASTAR Pacesetter one of the best giant slalom racers in the history of skiing. At age 21, he shocked the world by becoming the youngest American male to win an Olympic Gold Medal in Alpine Skiing. In 2013, Ted became the first man in 45 years to win three events at the World Championships, and in 2014 he won the first-ever Olympic Gold Medal for the U.S.A. in giant slalom. At the 2015 World Championships on home soil in Colorado, Ted became the first skier to win three consecutive World Championship titles in giant slalom, securing his place in ski racing history. After his first season-ending injury in 2016, Ted struggled to come back in 2017. This season, he geared up for gold in Pyeongchang. We’re proud to call Ted an official NASTAR Pacesetter.
Bill Hudson was raised in Squaw Valley, California. An eight-year U.S. Ski Team racer and 1988 Olympic Team member, skiing is in his blood, as his mother (Sally) was also an Olympian (Oslo, 1952). Hudson graduated from North Tahoe High School and attended Dartmouth College. He qualified for the U.S. Ski Team his freshman year and ultimately graduated from the University of Utah. Bill is a Real Estate agent in Truckee-North Tahoe. He lives in Squaw Valley with his wife Kathrin and children Sophia, Bodie, and McCoy.