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Intermountain Youth Championships: A Memorable Experience
March 8, 2024
Molly Bowman & Heidi Makoutz

Almost 40 skiers from the BSF Nordic Devo Program (U10, U12, U14 and U16 groups) embarked on a journey to Ketchum, ID, to participate in the annual Intermountain Division Youth Championships on March 2-3, 2024. This is the inaugural travel experience for many in this age range, and the BSF coaches were dedicated to providing them with a complete and memorable traveling and racing adventure—complete with Dinosaur costumes, camaraderie, enthusiastic cheering, and, of course, ski racing.

Competitors had the chance to showcase their skills in both a classic cross-country ski race and a freestyle race. Adding an extra layer of excitement, the championships also featured an obstacle course race, where the BSF team's passion for playful antics on skis was unmistakable. The team excelled in the V-Board maze, jumping over hay bales and navigating the bamboo forest.

BSF secured numerous impressive top 5 finishes over the weekend and had 5 athletes in the Top 10 for the Overall U14 Cup.  A hearty congratulations to everyone involved! And equally important, big congratulations to our first-time racers - it's a special atmosphere for learning to work hard and have fun, and finding your best ski self with your team.

As a coach, the Youth Champs consistently stand out as the pinnacle of our season. Over the past six seasons, we have witnessed the growth of our athletes, from youngest to oldest, both as competitors and individuals, during their participation in these championships. It's truly gratifying to be a part of their journey. The culmination of emotions hit us as we enthusiastically cheered on our U14s during the final climb of the skate race. Knowing that, for some, this marks the end of their involvement in the Youth Champs event added a poignant layer to the weekend experience.

A race weekend combining hard work and lighthearted play on skis, a race weekend that focuses so heavily on team, teammates and camaraderie - there is no comparison.