–Noted ski photographer Phil Bowen passed along an interesting article on the Ajax soccer club’s development system. The New York Times piece provides a detailed look at a system that has been set up to identify and develop professional caliber soccer stars. Players as young as seven years of age are invited to attend the Ajax academy. With development a hot topic in the North American ski world, is there something to be learned here?
–Fairbanks skier Rory O’Donoghue made it to round four of the Scripps National Spelling Bee. He was felled by the word “ostrichism,” which, as far as we can tell, refers to an “act or behavior characterized by willing or pretentious ignorance of an existing danger.” If FasterSkier were to use it in a sentence, we would say something like this:
“As he watched Marit Bjoergen pull away at the end of the 50 k marathon, FasterSkier Editor Topher Sabot was not engaging in ostrichism; rather, he did not have the fitness to chase her.”
–Participants have been selected for the fourth annual Ski Idol competition, Norway’s reality ski TV show.
–The Snow Farm in New Zealand, where many national teams go to train during the summer, has opened for the “winter.”
–Swedish Olympic medalists, including skiers Charlotte Kalla, Anders Soedergren, Johan Olsson, Daniel Richardsson, and Marcus Hellner, will receive medals from King Carl XVI Gustaf on Tuesday.
–Russian officials have been discussing new training facilities for the country’s winter sports athletes.
–The International Ski Federation has its own interview with Kikkan Randall, who is skiing on the Sognefjell Glacier in Norway this week after winning a roller sprint last weekend.