WATERVILLE, Maine ??вЂќ Colby College All-American skier Warner Nickerson (New Hampton School/Tilton, N.H.) is in Innsbruck, Austria to ski for the United States at the 2005 FIS World University Games from January 13-22.
Nickerson, a senior at Colby, is one of six male skiers competing for the U.S. team in downhill, slalom, giant slalom and Super-G events.
“It will be such a great experience going to Europe and competing for your country,” Nickerson said. “I’ll ski in front of thousands of people and it will definitely be on TV over in Europe.”
After a few days of training, Nickerson will compete Saturday in the downhill. The Super-G racing will be on Sunday, giant slalom next Wednesday and a slalom competition during the evening next Friday.
Nickerson will miss the opening alpine ski race for Colby at the Bates Carnival on January 21-22. However, skiing at the site of the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics will be invaluable experience for Nickerson.
Skiing out of the country was a big factor in Nickerson’s big year in the Eastern Intercollegiate Ski Association (EISA) carnival season in 2004. Nickerson got in plenty of skiing while studying abroad in New Zealand in fall of 2003.
“A buddy of mine from Williams College and I did some very focused skiing where we bounced ideas off each other,” said Nickerson, who majors in economics and government at Colby. “We’d watch World Cup video races and then mimic what they did the next day when we went to ski.”
The experience in New Zealand and then another month of skiing in Colorado in December 2003 had Nickerson ready for the 2004 season. Nickerson dominated the men’s EISA circuit at one point with five straight victories in slalom and giant slalom racing. He became the first Colby skier to win slalom and giant slalom races in the same weekend.
Nickerson’s dream season took a small crash when he was forced to miss nearly three weeks with a contusion on his left knee. After returning to the lineup, Nickerson went on to earn All-America second team honors in the giant slalom at the NCAA meet.
Competing well in Europe and a good final season with Colby is Nickerson’s short-range goals to attain his long-term goal.
“After graduation the best case scenario would be being on the U.S. ski team and training in Park City, Utah,” Nickerson said. “I’m pretty close right now, but I still need to put together some results.”