“America will be stronger than ever” – Fondo Italia

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The president of the United States of America Donald Trump in 2016 he set up his own election campaign with the lucky slogan “Make America great again” that was a great help to him in winning the white house election four years ago. But when in 2013 he thought about his presidential candidacy, the first slogan that came to his mind was “We will make America great (We want to make America great) “electoral leitmotif which, however, did not fully convince him. So he thought about the sentence “Make America great (Make America great) “. But this second idea eventually seemed disrespectful to his country’s glorious past.

So he came up with the perfect slogan to return America again a great one country. Slogan and brand that the New York tycoon immediately wanted to deposit as a registered trademark and print it on its now renowned red and blue caps and stars and stripes t-shirts.

Now, the head coach of the US fund Chris Grover, by presenting the national cross-country team for the next season, he could well draw on the first slogan designed by the 45th stars and stripes president to launch his boys in the gotha ​​of the world fund. With the talent, both in the male and female fields, that young American cross-country skiers have shown to have at junior level in the last four years, which combined with the now established names of the various Diggins, Bjornsen is Caldwell, he can rightly say that, at least in the end, soon the USA team as a whole it will be as big as never before.

In fact, if we look at the fondistic past of the United States we note that from the 70s onwards the stars and stripes movement has only made use of soloists who have come to the international stage, rather than a real Team capable of undermining the domination of traditional Nordic countries.

We all remember in the first place Bill Koch who, besides being the first to introduce the technique in skating, won the first edition of the world Cup in 1982, in addition to winning the silver medal in the 30km of the Olympic Games in Innsbruck 1976 and bronze, always in the same distance in the World Championships in Oslo 1982.

With the withdrawal of Koch occurred in 1994, we must wait a decade before the United States managed to produce a new level cross-country skier. In the World Cup 2003 of the Val di Fiemme American Kris Freeman touched the medal in the 15km finishing in fourth place. Wooden medal that the cross-country skier of New Hampshire he repeated six years later in the Liberec always in the same format.

In the last ten years, however, if we think of the fund stars and stripes they cannot not be mentioned Kikkan Randall is Jessica Diggins, who with the historic Olympic gold in Team sprint a Pyeongchang 2018 they crowned a decade in which the two American girls were able to fight in World Cupor always for top positions.

But to make it United States a great nation, fundamentally speaking, has lacked a real team and a high level homogeneous movement, to be added to the stars capable of individual enterprises.

The head coach and director of the American cross-country skiing program Chris Grover in the podcast created by the Cross-Country Skier magazine for the presentation of the team USA 2020-21 (click here to view the complete list) now he says he is convinced that he has the best team, both for men and women, in his hands United States have ever had in their history.

In describing his boys in their entirety, the slang expression is very recurrent in him “We have tons of talent” that is, we have a lot of talent on our roster. A very young American team with an unexplored potential that can be assessed in the next World Cup in Oberstdorf but who will work with the aim of showing themselves fully from the Olympics in Beijing 2022 forward.

The native head coach of Anchorage but for some years residing in Hailey, Idaho, in confirming the statement of best Usa team he always wants to start from the team called D or the development team that targets the Chinese Olympics but above all the following four years: “Analyzing the list of selected athletes well, for example our team D has never been so numerous and with so much potential in perspective. This reflects the fact that it has had so many valuable results at a junior level in recent seasons. We have a great depth in the choices at national level both among men and girls as we have never had before. For example, fifteen years ago there was no girl on the national team. This large number of excellent athletes certainly favors the development of everyone in the team as everyone gives the maximum to excel and each pushes the partner to reach the highest possible level. Among the men, who have been lower than girls in the last decade, team B and the Development Team present a number of talented guys who are about to come to the fore as we have never had in the past forty years. Last year, our juniors won important medals in both the men’s and women’s relay at the World Championships and this shows the depth of the American fund of the moment. Unfortunately, last season ended early without the possibility that many of them could make their World Cup debut in Minneapolis, Quebec City or Canmore. It would have been a great experience for our young people. But time is definitely on our side. “

According to the main American media and cross-country skiing experts he will probably be in his twenties Gus Schumacher the beacon of movement USA after the historic medals that the Alaskan native has collected at junior level in the past three seasons. Schumacher, which entered by Grover in Team B, although he is continuing his university studies in his beloved Anchorage, will debut in world Cup in the opening of Ruka and should stay in Europe for most of the next winter season.

But around Gus, very good bubbling in the pot USA.

The director of the Yankee cross-country skiing program wants to spend more than a word on his own team D, never as numerous and talented as the one presented in view of the coming seasons: «In this group of kids, as a whole we find a great deal of talent, it is difficult for me to choose just one name. For example, Hannah Halvorsen was progressing very well two seasons ago, then she had the terrible accident that deprived her of an entire season and now we are waiting for her to return. We also have the new members of the group like JC Schoonmaker, Sophia Laukli and Sydney Palmer-Leger with whom I can’t wait to start working. JC is a fun but talented guy who did well in Dresden last year. He made his first World Cup points in his debut. Sophia made top 5 in the 15km mass start of the Junior World Championships and gave a big hand in the relay to get silver. Sydney missed the podium twice for a few cents, always finishing fourth at the Lausanne Youth Olympics and despite being only in the 2002 class, she was selected for the medal relay at Oberwiesenthal making a significant contribution in the first half. Then I would also like to mention Hunter Wonders who made top 10 in the Under 23 World Cup and the three boys (Ogden, Jaeger, Hagenbuch) who with Gus won the gold in Oberwiesenthal. On the whole, talent is certainly not lacking here. »

But there is a particular reason for this continuous batch of young prospects of the fund like never before in the history of the United States? Coach Grover explains that there are two main reasons. First of all, the ski clubs all over the American territory are doing an excellent job in developing the kids. Major clubs have significantly improved coaching skills of their coaches from a teen age. The coaches are now more professional, they train the boys full time and with improved teachings which did not happen two decades ago. The second point, continue the coach, is given by a common line in developing the individual qualities of the boys during the various training camps that develop throughout their immense territory. This common line starts from teenagers, continues in juniors first and then in universities, and then continues in National team.

Grover cites the example of the technicians of the NCAA who no longer have an urge to obtain immediate results but have a vision of developing their talent in the years to come. There is a great collaboration between all American technicians who deal with cross-country skiing. In America they follow a common path, started more than ten years ago, in all areas ski club, work which is then finalized in the National team with boys and girls who have an ethics of work extraordinary, who love to work side by side without envy, are friends of each other and who push each other day after day, but at the same time at the end of the training they take care of each other.

The coach who has been well integrated into the US technical cadres for more than twenty years Grover also underlines, in this group of kids who are being born, that besides having cross-country skiing talent, also owns a large one sports culture in the sense of being fully inclusive in the group they are part of and not competing against each other. Everyone uses the strength of the companion in training and then compete to the fullest against the rest of the world.

In addition to the talent of the young people and the organization of the ski clubs from last season, the Usa team can also count on a guaranteed budget at least until the Olympics in Beijing 2022. The 39-year-old head coach explains that with the agreement signed last year with the Davis Family Foundation American cross-country skiing is in a very lucky economic situation also for the next two seasons. With this agreement, the Americans are in one special location with a guaranteed budget for the national team and team B until 2022 regardless of the economic slowdown that has created with Covid-19.

That for them is a special gift, they feel protected, is what the coach who graduated from the renowned is very proud to say Dartmouth College, in Vermont.

Now their challenge will be to find a way, perhaps through private donations or small sponsors, to financially support the Development Team, allowing them to do the most training camps with Diggins, Bjornsen & Co. and maybe to bring them also in the old continent to compete in the European or Scandinavian secondary circuit in winter.

Chris Grover closes the podcast by telling how the Covid-19 pandemic, which is still heavily affecting him United States, changed their summer training plans: «Usually we had the first national training camp in Oregon at the beginning of June but it blew up. At the moment the kids are training with their universities, clubs or individually, but the biggest problem will be training on the snow in the summer. I don’t think it’s possible to go to New Zealand in August to train on the glacier. For those residing in Alaska it will be easier as you can easily go to the nearby Eagle Glacier. In cross-country skiing, however, we consider ourselves rather lucky as with the rollerski during the summer you can trace for a good 90% the perfect technique that is used on the snow. So even if we don’t touch the snow this summer, I believe that we could still show up for the start of the competitive season in November. ».

Just the November 3 presidential elections will be held to see if Donald Trump he will be re-elected and who knows if he will invent a new slogan for the occasion to obtain a second term. Twenty four days later a Ruka, Gus Schumacher will debut in world Cup as well as some other cross-country skiers of the American new age.

Next season with World as a true highlight, it will already give us a first indication of how much America of the fund it will be great in the future. In addition to confirming the trio at the top of the world Diggins-Bjornsen-Caldwell and check the value of Gus and his young relay teammates in the cross-country of the greats, the pre-Olympic season will show us if the progress of Julia Kern is Hailey Swirbul will continue, if the Ogden bros they will approach the top positions, and if the kids still in junior age continue to fill the stars and stripes medal making of the season 2020-21 the prodrome to really make America of the fund the strongest in its history in the four-year period that will start from Beijing 2022.





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