Clubhouse Chronicles: The pursuit of Excellence at AVSC in 2019-20
AVSC Executive Director
On Tuesday night, we celebrated what was an amazing winter season for our community. We recognized coaches, volunteers and athletes who pour their heart and soul into their passion for winter sports. While this celebration would generally be in person, filled with high fives, hugs, and hoots and hollers, we shifted to a video to celebrate our honorees this spring.
Among many honors, we award our annual Andy Mill Award to an athlete who has achieved outstanding national and/or international results. Many of you likely know Andy, an Aspen local who grew up skiing with AVSC and went on to be America’s premiere downhill racer in the 1970s. He was awarded the U.S. Olympic Spirit Award in 1988 for a heroic performance at the 1976 Olympic Games, where he placed sixth in the downhill even though he was injured.
The Andy Mill Award is chosen from the top performer in each discipline. I wanted to take a moment to share their achievements with the community; we are immensely proud of the work they are putting in to pursue their passions and perform in their respective sports and grateful to the many community members who support them along their paths to success.
Freestyle skier Hanna Faulhaber, our 2020 Andy Mill Award winner, is ranked second in the United States for women’s halfpipe (21st in the world based on the FIS points list). She had a series of incredible results this year, including a third in halfpipe at the Youth Olympic Games in Switzerland and first right here at home in the Aspen Freeskiing Open, on top of multiple top-five North American Cup results and a top-10 World Cup result in Mammoth. Hanna is a role model for the entire freestyle team: she models our core values, trains hard, and takes the time to inspire younger athletes. Hanna is a U.S. Ski Team member.
Nordic skier Kate Oldham has diligently worked toward her goals, focusing on the process, taking risks and making sacrifices. She has an incredible attitude and does not let setbacks impede her long-term vision. She had amazing results at collegiate-level races: second junior at the CU Invitational (18th overall), fifth junior at University of Denver (top 25 overall), and top junior (13th overall) at the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Skiing Association Open, among other results! She finished third in the individual classic and eighth in the skate sprint at the U.S. Junior National Championships; both finishes were all-American. Kate has committed to ski at Middlebury College.
Snowboarder Shayne Sandblom had a great first year competing in the higher-level snowboard events. He was third in halfpipe in the Futures Tour (Park City) and earned three other top-20 performances at Rev Tour and Futures Tour events. On top of his results, Shayne embodies our core values and is a strong role model for younger athletes. Shayne puts an immense amount of effort into his success on and off the hill: traveling from Silt at least five days a week to train, working a part-time job, and maintaining good grades.
Alpine skier Tanner Perkins led by example with his work ethic, professionalism and maturity. When he’s not skiing, he works with the Crested Butte Fire Department (his hometown) and as a first responder and EMT he will go out of his way to help anybody needing care. He won two FIS downhill races in Aspen, earned two top-20 results in the North American Cup races, and earned two top-10 results at National Junior Championships in Snowbasin this spring. He is a member of the RMD All-Star Team and has attended U.S. Ski Team camps.
Congratulations to Hanna, Kate, Shayne and Tanner!
Clubhouse Chronicles is a behind-the-scenes column written by the Aspen Valley Ski & Snowboard Club that runs periodically in the Outdoors and Sports sections.