Heading up to La Parva this month? You might just share a chair lift with some of world’s best skiers. The U.S. Ski Team’s men’s speed program began their first week of training in La Parva this week, and will be practicing on the mountain through the end of the month.
While usually the team trains in New Zealand in August, this year they opted for two training blocks on the slopes of Chile instead. The team will spend the first portion of their training in La Parva, and return in mid-September for a second session in Portillo.
Participating athletes include Olympic bronze medalist Andrew Weibrecht, Steven Nyman, Marco Sullivan, and Travis Ganong. The skiers are preparing for the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup speed season, which opens November 24 in Lake Louise, Canada, in addition to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
The team opened their training at La Parva with gliding drills, and will next move on to giant slalom and super G training. New snow just prior to the team’s arrival provided for excellent training conditions, according to Head Coach Andreas Evers.
“The surface has been great for training. Two days before the team arrived, La Parva received just over a foot of snow and that has packed down nicely,” Evers said.
Olympian Andrew Weibrecht has been recovering from ankle surgery, but he reported no problems with his skiing this week and was happy to begin his training in La Parva.
“It’s awesome being back on snow. I’ve been here a few days, and I’m trying to get my feet back underneath me, ” he said.
While La Parva features many options for advanced and expert skiers, the mountain’s diverse slopes also offer options for skiers of all levels. La Parva is located just 31 miles (50 km) from Santiago.