Sun Valley freestyle coach Andy Ware said the level of competition at the 2008 Freestyle Junior Olympics at Steamboat Springs, Colorado, was the best he has ever seen.
"It could have easily been a NorAm tour," Ware said. "There were some really good kids there. We have a real young team and it was a great experience for our kids, some of whom have four or five more JO's in front of them."
After the weeklong competition, four Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation skiers, Austin Bourret, Zana Davey, Hannah Haupt and Anita Vorsteveld, qualified to compete at U.S. Nationals in Park City, Utah, at the end of the month. To earn a berth at nationals, racers have to be in the top 50 in the nation, or a member of the U.S. Ski Team.
Sun Valley team members Hannah Haupt, Trace Page, Austin Moses, Trevor Norris, Nathan Moses, William Eagan, Bourret, Davey and Vorsteveld compiled several highlights throughout the week in a field that Ware put at 400.
"There were 160 kids in moguls alone," Ware said.
Davey finished 3rd overall in the combined, which compiles the scores from moguls (66th), halfpipe (22nd) and aerials (16th). Bourret was 4th in combined (40-MO/39-HP/16-AE) and advanced to the round of 16 in dual moguls.
Haupt launched a 540 to claim 8th overall in halfpipe and 2nd in the J3 class. She was 17th in aerials with a 6th in her class. Vorsteveld was 15th overall in aerials and 4th in J2s. She was 21st in halfpipe and 8th class. William Eagan was 50th in aerials. Trace Page skied to 36th in halfpipe in a field twice that size, and 53rd in aerials.
Austin Moses suffered a knee injury on the first day, but stuck around the whole week to help out. Nathan Moses "had a good singles run" (59th) and got to be a forerunner in duals. Trevor Norris also competed in single moguls.