Burkies Shine at U16 National Performance Series Camp

Photo by Peter Ostroski

The best U16 athletes in the country converged on BMA from January 8 to 11 for the US Ski and Snowboard National Performance Series.

“The purpose of the NPS camps is to stimulate long-term growth and prepare athletes for future international competition,” explains Brad Wall ‘97, Director of Athletics at BMA.

Originally scheduled to run for 5 days, the project was cut short due to weather. While all of the scheduled races were completed, some training opportunities were not possible.

“The particular focus of this camp was on high-quality training and racing, beginning with two days of SL and finishing with three days of GS,” tells BMA alumni Chip Knight ‘93, Alpine Development Director for the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association.

A total of 24 boys and 24 girls took part in the camp. Zoe Zimmerman ‘20 (Gilford, NH), Sami Trudeau ‘20 (East Burke, VT), Dan Gillis ‘20 (Guilford, CT), and Aidan Robin ‘21 (Stowe, VT) represented BMA.

Race results from the camp were used for selection to compete at the OPA (Seven Nations) Cup in Liechtenstein in February.

Following the camp, Zimmerman was nominated to represent the U.S. Ski Team at the OPA Cup. A full round-up of the final rankings for the OPA cup can be found here.

Zimmerman and her teammates will spend roughly 10 days in Europe training and competing. The focus will be on high-quality training, exposure to European environments, and head to head competition with some of the best U16 athletes in the world.

“The final item on the packing list for the trip to Europe is a good work ethic and a positive attitude,” says Wall. “We are confident Zoe has this covered!”

In December 2016, Burke Mountain and Burke Mountain Academy were officially designated a US Ski Team High Performance Training Center which has prompted many new exciting initiatives in the area including the NPS camps. Burke is the second of two national U16 projects during the 2017-18 season.

“Hosting high-level race series and projects such as the NPS, allow us to showcase our world-class facilities,” added Wall. “We have been telling people about them for a while now, but not until they visit can they get a true appreciation. Our training facilities are our strategic advantage and we need to remain committed in our drive to maximise their offerings,” he concluded.