Men’s Alpine Team Finds New European Home Base in Italy

15.01.2019 - In a recent press conference hosted by Alpe Cimbra, Trentino, John McBride - head coach of the men’s speed team - spoke fondly of the partnership, and the first meeting in 2006 when Marco Dallapiccola, owner of IconWise LLC, worked on the first partnership between the U.S. Ski Team and Trentino Paganella Ski. Conversations between the two entities about the return of the U.S. Ski Team to Trentino, Italy, began again in summer of 2018.

"Marco Dallapiccola has been helping the team since 2006 and we are happy for this new partnership,” said McBride. Alpine Director Jesse Hunt echoed McBride’s sentiments about the partnership and its significance for the men’s alpine team.

“The men’s alpine team has forged a long-term relationship with Alpe Cimbra, Trentino, featuring world-class training and hospitality,” said Hunt. “This partnership will be an integral part of equipping our men’s alpine team with necessary resources and training as we head through the Olympic cycle en route to Beijing. For our athletes, who spend a majority of the winter in Europe away from home, the partnership with Alpe Cimbra, Trentino is a huge benefit.”

Prior to the Alta Badia, Italy, FIS Alpine Ski World Cup races in December, Alpe Cimbra hosted the men’s tech team, including Olympic Champion Ted Ligety (Park City, Utah) and two-time Olympian Tommy Ford (Bend, Ore.), who followed that up with a career-best fifth place at Alta Badia. Following the Val Gardena, Italy, World Cup, where Bryce Bennett (Squaw Valley, Calif.) had a career-best fourth place, leading three into the top six - Steven Nyman (Sundance, Utah) and Travis Ganong (Squaw Valley, Calif.) respectively - the men’s speed team enjoyed a week of training on the slopes of Alpe Cimbra. From there, they went to Bormio, Italy, and Bennett matched his career-best with another fourth place - just 15 hundredths of a second from the podium.

Michael Rech, President of the Tourism Board of Alpe Cimbra, said that the partnership has been successful since day one. “The team’s feeling with the destination has been positive since the beginning, with great training since the first day,” Rech said. “The U.S. Ski Team has admired the enormous efforts of the Folgaria Ski in preparing in few days the perfect slopes. Moreover, they have appreciated also the Ski Team Alpe Cimbra, in particular the trainers and volunteers who were working in creating the optimal conditions. They have been amazed by the sun that kisses our slopes, and for this reason it could be said that Alpe Cimbra looks like California!”

“We are honored,” Maurizio Rossini, CEO of Trentino Marketing, reflected, “to have the U.S. Ski Team back on the snow of Trentino after the great experience we had with Paganella ski area, a partnership that has never stopped. The agreement with Alpe Cimbra is particularly important as it will last for the next four agonistic seasons until 2022. For the Trentino region, it represents a unique opportunity of international visibility and promotion. I would like to recall that during these weeks in Trentino, not only the Norwegian and American teams, but also other important national teams are training for the forthcoming appointments of the FIS Alpine Ski World Cup. It represents an outstanding award for the quality of our slopes, infrastructures and the ability of our colleagues.”

Nyman speaks for the entire group when he says: “They’ve opened their doors to us like it was home. They treat us like Kings. We eat incredibly well at many of their great restaurants and they are preparing the slopes how we specify, allowing us to prepare for the World Cups as best we can. It’s a great partnership that I’m really excited about...the Trentino region has treated us well in the past and I am excited to reignite this relationship once again!”

The men look forward to their next stop in Alpe Cimbra, Trentino - their new home away from home.