Freestyle

ID One Foundation Supports Moguls Athletes

by
Caitlin Furin
2016-03-14 08:04
 

PARK CITY, Utah (March 14, 2016) – When Bryon Wilson, Brad Wilson and Sho Kashima got involved with ID One USA, the distribution outfit for ID One skis in the United States, they began to think of ways they could support mogul skiing beyond just supplying equipment. As athletes themselves, they saw a need for funding at the elite level, so they started to brainstorm ideas on how they could help.

During Thanksgiving dinner at training camp in Tignes, France this fall, the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team moguls athletes got some great news from Bryon, Brad and Sho. Through Park City, Utah’s annual day of giving, Live PC Give PC, their newly formed ID One Foundation was able to raise $27,600 and 12 athletes on the team would receive $2,300 each to help with their competition expenses this season.


ID One Foundation board members (L to R) Brad Wilson, Sheri Page, Sho Kashima and Bryon Wilson present their donation to the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association. (ID One Foundation)

Unlike their competitors, athletes of the U.S. Ski Team, U.S. Snowboarding and U.S. Freeskiing receive no government funding. The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Foundation, which relies on support from the American public, aims to fund athletic aspects such as coaching, sport science and training facilities, and provides direct financial assistance to support athlete travel costs. Over the course of an athlete's career, the USSA can provide up to $2 million of support through travel, coaching staff, sport science and medicine, education and rehabilitation. Many of the top athletes receive full financial support, but the upcoming athletes on the team are responsible for many of their own individual costs. This means that some significant expenses, including airfare, lodging and meals, are being paid by the athletes themselves.

“For competitions, we get a discounted rate through the International Ski Federation (FIS), but travel and lodging are still really big costs, especially for camps,” said Brad. “You have to go to those camps in order to progress. The off season is when you get better and you have to take advantage of those opportunities.”

It’s no secret that skiing is an expensive sport, and the financial commitment can be deterring to athletes at any level. The ID One Foundation aims to relieve the financial stress for freestyle moguls athletes and fund training costs, equipment, competition fees, travel, personal development and education.

“As U.S. Freestyle Ski Team athletes, we’ve all gone through it,” said Brad. “We’ve had to spend $20,000-$25,000 to cover costs for one season. That was a big reason for us making the foundation and choosing to, as board members, not receive any funds. Every single member of the team is talented, and they’ve made so many sacrifices to get where they are, so we wanted it all to go back to them.”

As it grows, the ID One Foundation would like to extend its financial support beyond the national team, helping to fund athletes at every level of freestyle skiing. This year, they will allocate the remaining funds from their Live PC Give PC campaign to the entry fees for the top 10 non-national team men and women who qualify for the 2016 USANA U.S. Freestyle Championships, taking place March 17-20 in Steamboat, CO.

“We love this sport so much and we want it to grow,” stated Bryon. “We believe having a fully funded U.S. team would help that growth. If a parent wanted their kid to be involved in mogul skiing, they look at the pipeline and determine if being on the U.S Ski Team is a worthwhile thing. The financial burden deters a lot of parents and kids from reaching that level. We want kids to feel the love of the sport, and not have to worry about the financial part of it. I hope we can take that weight of their shoulders and help them ski their best.”

 

For more information about the ID One Foundation, visit www.idonefoundation.org.

To support the U.S. Ski Team, U.S. Snowboarding and U.S. Freeskiing, visit donations.ussa.org.