NSCD Celebrates its 41st annual event | SkyHiNews.com

NSCD Celebrates its 41st annual event

The National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) will host the 41st Annual Wells Fargo Ski Cup this weekend, Feb. 26 – 28 at Winter Park Resort. This event is the largest fundraiser for the NSCD, bringing in more than $250,000 to support therapeutic recreation summer and winter programs for children and adults with disabilities.

Saturday

The Corporate Challenge will highlight skiers and snowboarders from 33 corporate teams race against each other to claim bragging rights and prizes. A NSCD Competition Center athlete races on each team for cash prizes to help finance his/her expenses to train for the 2018 Winter Paralympics.

Sunday

On Sunday the kids get in on the action! Kids of Wells Fargo Ski Cup guests, ages 5-12, race the same course as the professionals and are joined by mascots from Winter Park and Colorado sports teams in the Kids Snowplow Sprint.

Capping off the weekend on Sunday is the World Disabled Invitational. Professional athletes from around the world compete for cash prizes in a race unlike any other. Other weekend events include a two-day silent auction, Wells Fargo hospitality tent, tubing to raise funds for the NSCD and the Ski for NSCD Pledge Drive.

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The Sky-Hi News caught up with a few athletes this week to see how their training was going and how they are preparing for future races.

Mark Urich

Mark Urich, 30, from Big Sky, Montana.

Urich was born with a birth defect known as Proximal Femoral Focal Deficiency, or PFFD, where his femur on the right side was deformed and the lower leg was also missing the fibula. This led to an amputation of his lower leg to better fit a prosthetic at the age of 2.

"You are as disabled as you want to be," said his mom throughout this youth. He was active, played little league, football and basketball. In 2010 he met Alana Nichols and was introduced to NSCD and the Paralympics.

"I love competing in the Wells Fargo Cup and being a part of the corporate race," he said.

"When people see this race they get excited to learn about the adaptive world. It drives everyone to do better."

Any money he wins will go "into the account for training for and racing 2016 IPCAS/USP Nationals at Loon Mountain in March," he said. Contributions are accepted here: https://www.rallyme.com/rallies/2666/markurich

Larry Martin

Larry Martin, 59, lives in Winter Park and is visually impaired. He is on the NSCD competition team. His guide is Brad Washburn of Tabernash. They use helmet-to-helmet communication while skiing. They will be racing on Saturday.

"We train on different hills in Winter Park," he said. Training this week is primarily on Hughes. After this weekend he will be training for the big race: 2016 IPCAS/USP Nationals at Loon Mountain in New Hampshire.

He heads to the Fraser Rec for cross training, spinning, loosening up legs, and stretching during the winter training months.

"In four years I have really have improved – due mainly to Brad, a former US paralympian. He's really helped me with my skiing. – he's more than a guide, he's a coach. He really knows his stuff about disabled ski racing."

This ski season is his forth full year skiing with NSCD. In the summer he lives and trains in New Jersey .

Tyler Carter

Tyler Carter, 22 is an NSCD athlete and has been racing for 10 years. A below knee amputee, Carter lost his leg at 1 year old. He started skiing at 8 and began ski racing at 12. Carter is from Pennsylvania and attended a ski camp where he learned about the Winter Park organization, NSCD. Now, he arrives in Winter Park every November to train until April.

In winter he skis five days a week, and a sixth day occasionally.

"I love Winter Park. The town and mountain are a great support base for us. The community is really involved. The resort has varied terrain, it's a good training venues and there are fun areas to free-ski on off days."

This week he is competing in Aspen prior to the Wells Fargo Cup. He competed on Wednesday and Thursday. After his last race on Friday he heads back to Winter Park.

"I had two good, solid runs on Wednesday," he said. "The snow [in Aspen] is firm, well maintained, and fast."

He has raced in one Paralympics so far; Sochi in 2014. He hopes to qualify for the team again in 2018.

Nick Catanzarite

Nick Catanzarite, 38 a Grand County local will be racing this weekend after many years of racing with NSCD.

"I'm retired from competition," he said.

"Competing this weekend is a way to have fun for a retired guy. It's nostalgic to race now."

Catanzarite stays in touch with skiers he raced with. "It's great to see all these people and the people who support NSCD during the weekend."

In 1995 Catanzarite had a spinal cord injury at Winter Park Resort. After his injury his able-body ski coach encouraged him to try sit skiing.

"I didn't think sit skiing would be all that fun, but after about 20 days on the snow I started to feel like this is just as much fun as regular skiing," he said. Catanzarite was a member of the U.S. Disabled Ski Team for eight years. He is a three-time paralympian.

Carl Burnett

Carl Burnett, 34, lives in Boise, Idaho and is a former NSCD athlete. He doesn't race anymore except for the Wells Fargo Cup. He raced until 2010 on US Adaptive team based in Winter Park. Now he is a self-confessed "weekend warrior".

"I get to ski for fun. I haven't been in gates for a long time. I do this event every couple of years to support NSCD and reconnect with athletes," he said

He was on the team from 2000-2009 and over the years stayed in a touch with a few racers including local skier, Nick Catanzarite.

"Our time on the team overlapped," he said. "Now we are both doing other stuff and come back to support NSCD."

"I'm excited to be back and it is a chance to reconnect with great friends and see who the up-and-coming adaptive skiers are and get to know them."

"It's an exciting format for both racers and spectators. Racers – if you're ahead you feel the person breathing down your neck and if you're behind it's like a rabbit you are trying to catch, so either is fun." he said.

"With adaptive racers, the start gate opens differently based on the factor system. In adaptive that allows one disability class to race against another class."

For spectator it's exciting because whoever crosses first moves on in the competition.

NSCD Wells Fargo Bank Cup Athletes

UK: Sophie Elwes

Hometown: UK

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2014-Present

Achievements: 2014 attended British camp, Back Up; 2015 introduced into ski racing; 2016 competed IPC race, Park City, Utah.

USA: Gerald Hayden

Birthplace: Fresno, CA

Hometown: Denver, CO

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2005-2014

Achievements: Competed in 2006 Torino, Italy, 2010 Vancouver, Canada, 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympics.

Iceland: Johan Holmgrimsson

Hometown: Hlidarfjall, Iceland

Disability: Spina Bifida

NSCD Athlete: 2010-Present

Achievements: Competed in 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympics

Goals: 2018 Winter Paralympics – Pyeongchang, South Korea.

USA: Ian Jansing

Birthplace: Cleveland, OH

Hometown: Granby, CO

Disability: Cerebral Palsy

NSCD Athlete: 2001-Present

Achievements: Competed in 2010 Vancouver, Canada, 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympics

USA: Joe Johnson

Birthplace: Omaha, NE

Hometown: Fort Collins, CO

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: Way too long ago-2006

Achievements: Competed in 1990 World Championships; 1994 Lillehammer, Norway Winter Paralympics.

USA: Allison Jones

Birthplace: Amarillo, TX

Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 1992-2015

Achievements: Competed in 2002 Salt Lake City, UT, 2006 Torino, Italy, 2010 Vancouver, Canada, 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympics for alpine skiing; 2004 Athens, Greece, 2008 Beijing, China, 2012 London, UK Summer Paralympics for Cycling.

USA Kelly Kosky

Hometown: Republic of Transkei, Africa

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 2012-Present

Achievements: Redeveloping skiing with NSCD

USA: Nick Manely

Disability: Neuro-muscular Diseases

NSCD Athlete: Present

Achievements: AAA+ personality and mentality towards all parts of life, family and sports; strength, determination, inspiration, commitment and lack of fear.

USA: Ty McKenna

Birthplace: Anhui Province, Eastern China

Hometown: Castle Rock, CO

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 2011-Present

Achievements: 2014 received the Huntsman Cup "Outstanding Junior Competitor" award; 2014 John Lynch "Exceptional Athlete" scholarship.

USA: Edgar Nevarez

Disability: TBI

NSCD Athlete: 2011-Present

Achievements: Awarded the Purple Heart & Bronze Star; competed in several USASA Snowboard competitions.

USA: Alana Nichols

Birthplace: Farmington, NM

Hometown: Wheat Ridge, CO

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2008-Present

Achievements: Competed in 2008 Beijing, China, 2012 London, UK Summer Paralympics for wheelchair basketball; 2010 Vancouver, Canada, 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympics for alpine skiing.

USA: Steve Peters

Birthplace: Manhattan, KS

Hometown: Fraser & Denver, CO

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2001-2008

Achievements: 1992-2003 chair of the board of directors of Craig Hospital, Englewood, CO; 2007 elected trustee for the NSCD; 1990-2000 instructor for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy; member of the Criminal Justice Act Panel for the U.S. District Court for the District of CO; member of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the ABA White Collar Section.

USA: Autum Reagan

Hometown: Kansas

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 2011-Present

Achievements: 2007 started skiing with the NSCD; 2011 competitive skiing with the NSCD.

USA: Beth Requist

Birthplace: Fort Collins, CO

Hometown: Winter Park, CO

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2012-Present

Achievements: Competed in 2014 Sochi Russia Winter Paralympics for cross-country skiing and biathlon; 2014-2015 winter joined the alpine ski team.

Goals: 2018 Winter Paralympics – Pyeongchang, South Korea.

USA: Katrina Schaber

Disability: Cerebral Palsy

NSCD Athlete: 2014-Present

Achievements: Member of the US development adaptive alpine ski program; competed in IPCAS Huntsman Cup, in Park City, Ut; attended 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Paralympic Games as part of the Next Generation Paralympic Athletes; 2015 World Championships, Panorama, Canada; 2015 super combined US National Champion.

SWE: Johan Strandmark

Hometown: Sweden

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 2015-Present

USA: Kyle Taulman

Hometown: Steamboat Springs, CO

Disability: Spinal Cord Injury

NSCD Athlete: 2015 – Present

Achievements: newest member of the NSCD alpine race team; participated in the STARS Development Race Team in 2014 and 2015.

Goals: 2018 Winter Paralympics – Pyeongchang, South Korea.

USA: Paige VanArsdale

Hometown: Steamboat Springs, CO

NSCD Athlete: Present

Achievements: member of DSUSA E Team and a skimeister on her high school team and cross country team; junior mentor during the summer for children with disabilities, taking them kayaking, swimming, and cycling.

Goals: 2018 Winter Paralympics – Pyeongchang, South Korea.

USA: Spencer Wood

Birthplace: Killington, Vermont

Disability: Hemiplegia

NSCD Athlete: 2014-Present

Goals: 2018 Winter Paralympics – Pyeongchang, South Korea.

USA: Bradley Washburn

Birthplace: Wheatridge, CO

Hometown: Tabernash, CO

Disability: Amputee

NSCD Athlete: 2002-2010

Achievements: Competed in 2006 Torino, Italy, 2010 Vancouver, Canada Winter Paralympics.

Friday, February 26

10am – 3pm:

Corporate Challenge qualifying runs

12pm – 4pm:

Auction Tent

2pm – 4pm:

Athlete Autograph Session

Saturday, February 27

8:30am – 10am:

Corporate Challenge qualifying runs

9am – 7pm:

Auction Tent

10:30am:

Corporate Challenge

30 minutes following race:

Corporate Challenge Awards

Sunday, February 28

9am – 10am:

World Disabled Invitational Qualifying

10am – 11am:

Kids Snowplow Sprint

11am:

World Disabled Invitational Finals

30 minutes following race:

Ski for NSCD and World Disabled Invitational Awards Ceremony

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