Family Fun on the NASTAR Course at Deer Valley Resort

Family

I know a thing or two about competitive fire. Living with an Olympic ski racer in Park City, Utah my kids are growing up on the slopes. I definitely feel like a fish out of water at the start of the NASTAR course, but I love it anyway!

Just picture it: I’m standing at the top of the race course, eyes focused on the first gate and occasionally at the tough competition to my right. I know this girl well. She loves speed and she knows how to work her skis like she is straight off the World Cup circuit. It runs in her family; well at least half of her family. Let’s face it, my almost eight-year-old daughter is better than I am on skis. But I am addicted to the competition. It’s the speed, intensity, terrain, and of course, the final gate and the finish that keep me coming back. NASTAR is ski racing at its amateur best!

Summer Start

Every time I squeeze my size 11 foot into my ski boot, I grimace, and then I smile thinking of making my way to the NASTAR course at Deer Valley Resort. It’s a family affair for us, which is one of the reasons I love it so much. The kids and I can’t wait to get out there and compete. We love being able to measure our improvement and of course just the adrenaline of the race. Of course, we are usually just competing against each other but there is still so much fun in that. Skye and I will joke saying, “You’re goin’ down, circus clown!” And while I try my hardest, she beats me every time. I probably ask my husband how I can get faster about 20 times every run. Mr. three-time Olympic skier just chuckles, knowing that speed is actually NOT my friend and replies, “We can get you there. You gotta get out of the gate faster.” And I’m fairly certain my face lights up at the prospect, and my brain in pure Jim Carey from Dumb and Dumber style says, ”So you’re sayin’ I have a chance!”

My kids LOVE the medals. And don’t get me wrong, I’m fond of my NASTAR silver too, but my true motivation is that desire to just shave a second, or even one-hundredths of a second off my time. It’s scary and exciting and it takes me back to my days in the pool, working on being my personal best. I have such appreciation for the best skiers and their abilities, and it’s fun to PRETEND to be one for 25 seconds. Plus, they announce your name!

Kids Start

So if you’re wondering what I’m talking about, the NA-tional STA-ndard Race, or NASTAR was started in 1968 by Ski Magazine to allow your average recreational skier (like me) to compete against friends and family regardless of when and where they race. You can find a course at over 115 resorts across the country and measure yourself against the best, your little bother, or in my case my son and daughter. There is a pace setter that establishes the course time at each course, and the timing and medals are based off of that. Our course setter at Deer Valley Resort is Heidi Volker. I know her as an Olympian and mom. I asked her a few NASTAR questions that I would like to share.

Summer: Why NASTAR? Why do so many people like it and what does it let you compare?

Heidi: People love NASTAR courses because it allows you to compare yourself to the best in ski racing like, Ted Ligety and AJ Kitt. Ted is racing on the World Cup so AJ Kitt is the national pacesetter and travels around to handicap racecourses. Racing always get you hooked.

Summer: How can a family use NASTAR for fun and growth in their skiing?

Heidi: Families can use NASTAR to compete against each other for bragging rights. This creates healthy and fun competition for your family.

Summer: Does it teach kids the skills of racing and/or more?

Heidi: NASTAR does teach the basics of ski racing. The courses are about a fourth of the regular length of World Cup races.

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Deer Valley Resort shared Ted Ligety's video.

Ted Ligety
Ted Ligety, Deer Valley Resort's global athlete ambassador, training on Mountaineer ski run earlier this month.
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Thanks @deervalleyresort for the awesome training this spring! New @head_ski 30m skis are a dream. #goprokarmagrip

Elizabeth Mahon, Debbie Meckbach and 429 others like this

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Steve KuehnTed Ligety....one of the greatest world class skiers on earth skiing at my favorite place on earth!! Thank you!! What great technique, balance, speed, carving and weight on downhill ski!!!😀😀😀❤️❤️❤️😀😀😀😀😀

22 hours ago   ·  3
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Steve KuehnI wish I could ski that well!! I am good and focus on the basics and technique, but I am nowhere near that good....Heaven on earth to me is skiing and / or teaching people to ski every day!!

17 hours ago   ·  3
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Lisa K SimpkinsNo wonder my favorite run was closed 2 weeks ago. He was going so fast I never saw him.

11 hours ago
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Patricia Wollerok, maybe he goes a little, just a little faster than I... one think is certain, that is one of my favorite runs!

13 hours ago   ·  1
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Laura Nolle SpurlinEmily Spurlin Abby Spurlin this is my favorite run "mountaineer" !!⛷

22 hours ago   ·  2
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Tom ThomasVery impressive, Patty must be proud.

21 hours ago
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Ted ForbesBill Mitchell I think you can take him

22 hours ago
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Hideko ShimabukuroOMG that's so fast...! Made me dizzy watching it. 😅

13 hours ago
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Dan PeoplesBill Liguori this looks a lot like Marc D. Lewis without the aqua green, one piece jump suit.

24 hours ago
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James EvansLooks fantastic there at Deer Valley --- look forward to a Huge Season for Ted in 2017 / 2018 as well as the Winter Olympics . . .

19 hours ago
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Effie Baramso rad having the mountain totally to yourself....VIP treatment

15 hours ago
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Nikki GraceI want to go. Just not that fast.

17 hours ago
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Miguel CamposRenzzo B Namuche ese weon skia igual a mi csm jajaja

21 hours ago   ·  1

2 Replies

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Barbara JonesThis is one of my favorite runs at Deer Valley!

14 hours ago
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Kirk HoffmanI've skied that, but not quite in the same way!

21 hours ago
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Joseph HamiltonJet propulsion?

21 hours ago
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Michael O'SullivanYeah, and I would be just ahead of you 😜

19 hours ago
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Karl ByrneThe true mountain sport, pure speed

12 hours ago
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Arlen Gilbertpretty much how I imagine I look when I ski.

23 hours ago
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Rachel O'SullivanMichael O'Sullivan this is what I look like on that run

23 hours ago
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Billy GlosWayne Wilkinson is that you?!! Crazy!

12 hours ago

1 Reply

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Elizabeth HaleIt even feels fun 😁😁

17 hours ago
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Leigh Gallagher WaltersWow

12 hours ago
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Damian Benitez VillegasAmazing race Miguel.

4 hours ago
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Dienna Armstrong LehnerDon't forget to duck😜

20 hours ago
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