Aaron Blunck is just one of the rookie team athletes benefitting from an expanded partnership with The North Face. Photo: Sarah Brunson
ALAMEDA, CA (Feb. 6) – U.S. Freeskiing and The North Face are taking the next step in their partnership with a broadened focus on both elite and development direction in freeskiing through U.S. Freeskiing’s new Rookie Team. This partnership builds off the The North Face's charter sponsorship of U.S. Freeskiing, which began in 2011 just before halfpipe and slopestyle skiing were announced as new Olympic sports.
U.S. Freeskiing has announced an expanded partnership with The North Face. The North Face is ensuring the development of the sport of freeskiing through U.S. Freeskiing's new Rookie Team.
U.S. Freeskiing’s Rookie Team provides support and training with expert coaches for teen athletes looking to advance their skills and competition level in both halfpipe and slopestyle skiing with the goal of eventually making the U.S. Freeskiing Pro Team.
This year, two U.S. Freeskiing Rookie Team members, Alexander Ferreira (Aspen, CO) and Annalisa Drew (Andover, MA) earned top honors in the halfpipe competition at the second PPOS stop in Whistler, B.C., giving them automatic entries into the X Games.
Rookie Team member Aaron Blunck (Crested Butte, CO) has already claimed his first career podium, taking second at the Visa U.S. Grand Prix at Copper.
The 10-member U.S. Freeskiing Rookie Team is coached by Ben Verge (halfpipe) and DJ Montigy (slopestyle).
Jeremy Forster, Director of U.S. Freeskiing The U.S. Freeskiing Rookie Team continues the development of athlete programs in halfpipe and slopestyle skiing. It will compliment the regional and club programs, along with our Project Gold development projects, as athletes' progress toward the Pro Team. We are stoked to be working with an amazing group of athletes in this first season of the Rookie Team, and to have hired two great coaches to lead the program
Mike Jaquet, CMO of the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Since the beginning of the freeskiing movement, The North Face has maintained an ongoing commitment to helping elevate the sport to the global stage. Starting before freeskiing was recognized as an Olympic sport, we’ve worked very closely with The North Face to identify unique opportunities to further the development of the sport at the grassroots level, both on the athlete side and through competition. It’s great to work with sponsors that are so committed to fostering the sport’s growth.
Aaron Carpenter, vice president of marketing for The North Face The North Face Park and Pipe Open Series has been a great opportunity for us to continue our commitment to growing the sport of freeskiing. In addition to our U.S. Freeskiing sponsorship and now our U.S. Freeskiing Rookie Team partnership, we have close relationships with several athletes, who also play a key role in our research, design and development and enable us to create unique freeskiing apparel.