LAKE PLACID, New York ??вЂќ The New York Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) and United States national team skier Bill Demong
have reached an agreement whereby the two-time Olympian from Vermontville, N.Y. will wear the ORDA logo and promote the Whiteface / Lake Placid region internationally.
Demong, who skied on the U.S. Nordic Combined team (ski jumping and cross country skiing) at the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics, is bidding for a berth on the 2006 Torino, Italy team. He is well on his way to achieving that goal. To date, Demong has finished 10th and 15th in World Cup A level competition this season. Most recently, he went to the B circuit and won events in Utah and Lake Placid.
“I’m excited about forming a tighter relationship with Lake Placid,” said the 25 year old skier. “I grew up here, train here, come back four or five times a year to see my family and ski with friends.”
Heading into February’s Winter Games in Italy, one of Demong’s goals is to win a medal in the Nordic Combined team event. His U.S. team narrowly missed an Olympic medal in Utah when they finished fourth. Previously, Demong was on gold and silver medal-winning units, respectively, in the team competitions of the 1999 and 2000 World Junior Championships.
Before and after the Winter Games, Demong will propagate the virtues of Lake Placid on the World Cup tour. He is currently en route to the German Grand Prix where competitions are set in three resorts on December 30, January 3 and January 6. Stops in Italy, Czech Republic, Austria, Finland, Norway and Japan will round out the winter schedule.
“It’s a pleasure for ORDA to be affiliated with a young man who exudes so many outstanding qualities,” said ORDA Interim President and CEO Jeff Byrne. “Not only is Bill one of the top Nordic combined competitors in the world, but he never fails to consider the coaches, organizers and volunteers who helped him achieve this level of success. There will be several communities who will be with him stride for stride this season.”
Demong will carry “Lake Placid” across his on-hill and off-hill headwear. With all events carried on live television in Europe, the village is positioned to gain abundant exposure.
“I hope to help market the town and increase exposure,” he said after a recent training session at Lake Placid’s Ski Jumping Complex.
“We’ll get the name out there and attract more attention. Hopefully this will encourage more international visitors to come here and ski the great snow we have at Whiteface and the Verizon Sports Complex cross country trails.”
Demong won the 2001 and 2002 national championships. His best season on the World Cup occurred in 2002 when he captured first place in the Czech Republic. In addition, Demong had seven top tens and 12 top fifteens in that same season. An injury sidelined him in 2003 but the skier they call “Iron Bill” is gradually making his way back to the podium.
For more information on ORDA venues and events and for web cams from five locations, please log on to www.whitefacelakeplacid.com.