Today, the Eastern Ski Writers Association chose Mikaela Shiffrin and Ryan Cochran-Siegle to receive the 2012 Don A. Metivier Golden Ski Award. Cochran-Siegle has now won three years in a row. Julia Ford, who has, like Cochran-Siegle, won the award three times, saw her winning streak come to an end when Shiffrin won for the first time last year. This is Shiffrin’s second consecutive win.
“This season has been a whirlwind of experiences, it was all ends of the spectrum. I had a lot of amazing results and I’m really happy to get those in there because it made this season – as my rookie season – worth all the hard work,” Shiffrin said.
The Golden Ski Award has been around since 1969, the year after the modern World Cup started, and is the oldest honor given to alpine ski racers around today. It is given to the best male and female racers in the East.
“Many of the Golden Ski winners have gone on to World Cup gold as well. We are proud to honor Mikaela Shiffrin and Ryan Cochran-Siegle, two extraordinary athletes, and look forward watching them set the bar even higher as they pursue their careers on the slopes,” Jim Gregory, Chair of the ESWA’s Golden Ski Award Committee said.
Shiffrin had an excellent season this year. Among her many accomplishments, she made the podium at the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup this year in slalom, taking home third in Lienz, Austria, and she held on to her U.S. slalom title in Winter Park at the Nature Valley U.S. Alpine Championships for year number two of her reign.
“All I can say to young athletes who are aspiring to accomplish great things is you just have to give it everything you have. It’s worth it; it’s worth every bit of the hard work that you put in,” she said.
Cochran-Siegle couldn’t be stopped this season either. His super G event in Beaver Creek earned him well-deserved World Cup points, and he picked up golds in downhill and combined at the 2012 Junior World Championships in Roccaraso, Italy.
“After Beaver Creek, I knew I was skiing well and just kept it going. I definitely had some bad days in there, but you learn from your mistakes. The medals from Junior Worlds gave me a ton of energy, but I also free ski a lot and I think it’s important to always be out there doing what you love,” he said. “It also helps to have a great team behind you. My coaches Brad [Saxe] and Pete [Korfiatis] have been great and definitely helped me get to this point.”
An official ceremony recognizing the winners will be held at the New England Ski Museum in Franconia, NH on June 1, from 5-7pm.
Photo credit: Eric Schramm