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The National Ability Center’s 35th Annual Huntsman Cup Returns on February 26-28
Athletes from around the globe to compete for the Huntsman Cup in a sanctioned Alpine ski racing event on Park City Mountain
PARK CITY, UTAH (Jan. 25, 2024) – This February, Paralympic athletes from North America will gather in Park City for the 35th Annual Huntsman Cup. The free event is hosted by the National Ability Center, a leading non-profit organization that provides world-class adaptive recreation and outdoor adventures for individuals, families and groups with disabilities. The Huntsman Cup is an Alpine ski racing event sanctioned by the International Ski and Snowboard Federation (FIS). The event will be held from Feb. 26 to Feb. 28 at Park City Mountain.
“In addition to attracting internationally known skiers, the Huntsman Cup is a great opportunity to showcase the fresh talent of the NAC’s High-Performance Team. For one, Annika Hutler, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, will make her debut in the standing ski division. Although it’s only her first season as a National Ability Center athlete, we see big things in her future,” said Rob Umstead, alpine ski head coach at the National Ability Center. “In addition, Park City local, Miranda Ritter, will make her racing debut, and on the men’s side, Gilbert Camacho, Jonathan Leonard and Brendan Doyle are new to the competition team and ski racing in general.”
Sponsored by Vail EpicPromise, Park City Mountain and the Huntsman Foundation, this three-day competition builds technical racing skills while serving as the first local competition of the season. Giant Slalom races are scheduled for Feb. 26 and 27, followed by the Slalom race on Feb. 28. The C.B.’s Run finish area is easily accessible from the First Time Parking area at Park City Mountain Resort. This year, the NAC will bring back the “Huntsman Cup” trophy, an award given to the male and female racer with the fastest time in all four races combined.
With upwards of 45 athletes planning to compete, this year’s event will be exciting to watch. Several national team members will even return to compete on their home hill of Park City Mountain including Matthew Brewer, Saylor O’Brien, Andrew Haragehy and more.
“I am absolutely thrilled to return to the National Ability Center and compete on the very mountain where I honed my skills. There’s an indescribable excitement and sense of familiarity as I prepare to showcase the results of countless hours of training on these slopes,” said Saylor O’Brien, member of the U.S. Para Alpine Ski Team and National Ability Center’s High-Performance Team. “The Huntsman Cup is more than a competition for me; it’s a celebration of my perseverance and commitment to alpine skiing. I am ready to compete against the next generation of National Ability Center athletes, and hopefully inspire others to give the sport a try.”
The Huntsman Cup team is looking for volunteers with race experience to get involved by volunteering as timers, course slippers or gate keepers. Additional volunteer opportunities are available on the volunteer portal. Those interested are also welcome to email [email protected]. For more information on the Huntsman Cup, visit discovernac.org/huntsman-cup.
About the National Ability Center
The National Ability Center (NAC) provides world-class adaptive recreation and outdoor adventures for individuals, families and groups with varying physical, cognitive and developmental disabilities. Rooted in Park City, UT for nearly 40 years, with a satellite location in Moab, the NAC empowers over 5,400 competitive athletes, children, active-duty, veterans and others yearly. Through on-campus and community-based programming, with individual and group activities, participants build self-esteem, confidence and lifetime skills. The NAC hosts over 30,000 experiences and lessons each year including alpine and Nordic skiing, snowboarding, horseback riding, cycling, swimming, rafting, archery, among others. In 2023, the 9,400 square foot McGrath Mountain Center opened to serve the NAC’s adaptive ski and snowboard programs, made possible by a historic 50-year land lease donated by Vail Resorts. With Vail’s EpicPromise as the National Ability Center’s largest annual community partner, the NAC is globally recognized as a leader in adaptive sports. For more information about the National Ability Center, visit discovernac.org.