The First 'Under the Suit' Calendar
Ski racing is a difficult sport. On any given day, we must overcome constantly shifting weather, changes to course conditions, and our own psyche to push the boundaries of our limits. In some ways though, the most challenging part of ski racing has nothing to do with skiing itself. Instead, the difficulty most Ski Team athletes face is finding the means to fund each season.
As members of the National Team, we represent the best skiers in the country, and compete with the best in the world. Each day whether it is in the gym or on the course, we are working to become quicker, faster, stronger, and more consistent - so that one day, we might stand on the top of the World Cup Podium, or represent our country at the Olympics. These are our are goals, but to get there we need your help.
Without the hugs from mom and dad, the big checks hidden inside goofy holiday Hallmark cards, and the cheers from the sideline or finish, none of us would have been able to make it this far. But as professional athletes, it is difficult to come back to the same group of supporters every season asking for financial help to allow us to pursue our dreams. Even though we are constantly making progress, the thought of letting down those whose hearts beat for ours can feel like we have achieved nothing.
This year we’re trying something different. We wanted to come together as athletes and teammates, to help each other raise the money that our governing body could not provide. We will not have been the first to produce a nude calendar. But in choosing to do so, we have the opportunity to show our supporters to take a look at the lives, personalities, and strengths of Ski Team athletes through a new lens.
What muscles are firing as we cross block a gate? What kind of balance, precision, skill, and grace does it take to fly 50 meters off a jump at 70 miles per hour? What kind of strength does it take to withstand those forces on a minute and a half course? How do the athletes relax and enjoy the hard work they put in?
These are all questions that we asked and that we hope to answer for you in the pages of "Under the Suit". The experience was a challenge, but we are proud of the calendar and each other. We hope you will enjoy each month as much as we enjoyed creating them.