Ski racing fans around the globe will be focused on Vermont this weekend, with stars including Mikaela Shiffrin competing at Killington Resort in the Audi FIS Ski World Cup this weekend.
Dozens of athletes from 21 countries will compete for both race points and eye-catching trophies handcrafted by a well-known Vermont company.
“If you want to be in the top three, you need to go for it,” racer Estelle Alphand of Sweden said of athletes’ need to push their limits this weekend in order to win. “I’ve never been on the podium before, so I will try and we will see!”
If she makes it, she’ll take home a trophy from the famous glassmaker Simon Pearce. It’s the third time the Vermont company has teamed with Killington to create the awards for the World Cup races.
New England favorite Mikaela Shiffrin took home a Simon Pearce creation to honor her 2017 win at Killington.
“It was exciting,” Simon Pearce production manager Nate Cloud said of getting to see a top ski star like Shiffrin holding a trophy the company produced.
Cloud said Simon Pearce’s master glassblowers are really proud to have a hand in the World Cup, which is taking place not far from their Quechee studio.
“It’s a big deal for Vermont,” Cloud observed.
For this year’s trophies, Cloud and his co-workers modified their popular Echo Lake hurricanes, with drizzles of glass carefully wrapped to best refract light.
Cloud said a top-secret production method and a lot of hand craftsmanship in each piece should make the prizes extra special.
“I thought it was a beautiful pick,” Cloud said of the choice of the Echo Lake design to modify for the trophies.
Killington Resort said it’s only fitting that a Vermont company would be chosen to create the trophies for an event hosted in the state.
“You’ll notice that on the World Cup tour—every race—they get these awards that are interesting and they go along with the theme of where it’s at,” Killington spokeswoman Courtney DiFiore said. “So it makes sense for us to partner with a Vermont company and have it be this very hand-crafted, special piece.”
The award presentations will take place immediately following the second runs of the day Sunday.
It’s free to attend the World Cup events in-person, with festivities starting Friday—including autograph-signings, a concert, and fireworks. The races themselves take place Saturday and Sunday.
If you can’t make it to Killington, the races will be broadcast on NBC at 3 p.m. on Saturday, and at 1 p.m. on Sunday.
Simon Pearce’s Nate Cloud said he’d like to see Mikaela Shiffrin repeat her past success at Killington this weekend.