Nor Am team quickie
Two South Shore ski racers have added to their resumes by subtraction, lowering their International Ski Federation race points enough for spots on the USSA Nor Am team.
Heavenly Ski Foundation racers Christie Higman and Jamie Hansen, both 18 years old, locked up spots on the Nor Am team with strong performances in Nor Am series speed events Monday at Big Mountain, Mont. Unlike many sports, where the goal is to score the most points, skiers trying to earn spots on the Nor Am teams enter a year-long quest to lower their FIS points with high finishes in FIS, Nor Am and other series.
“They’ve been racing (year-round), and they needed some results for the team,” said Heavenly JI-JII age division coach Javier “Xavi” Ubeira.
Higman rebounded from a hard fall, which necessitated four stitches in the face, on Sunday for a strong race on Monday, and Hansen overcame a knee injury the first day to rebound for another strong finish. The two Heavenly racers will represent Tahoe on a team that selects only about 10 racers from the USSA’s whole Western region.
The Big Mountain races followed a FIS mini-series at Park City.
A third Heavenly racer, Amy Brehm – in her second year as a JII – also had a strong performance at Big Mountain, but did not make the team. While Brehm excelled in the speed events, working her way into top-15 finishes out of starts in the 50s, Nor Am skiers must have strong performances in all four disciplines, both speed and technical.
The Nor Am team is a national team that extends invitations to join to racers who have lowered their FIS points. Membership can open opportunities for skiers.
“It’s an opportunity to qualify for the U.S. Championships and other stuff,” Ubeira said.
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