Who Is Katie Ryan?
Spoken quickly, it's Katie-Ryan, one word. Some better know me as SunKist; a name first given for a neon yellow one-piece ski outfit and has now become more of a life-long personal adjective. The dawn of my fond nick-name was the day I became enamored with Alpine Ski Racing. Ten years later, I can say with confidence the passion for the sport has strengthened significantly, as has the level of competition.
I am a current member of the U.S. Women's Alpine Ski Team. I will be starting my first World Cup races this season as a member of the B-Team. My goals are to be victorious in the Olympics and World Cup Championships as well as winning World Cup Titles along the way over the course of what I see as being long and fulfilling career in Ski Racing.
The funds raised here on RallyMe will help reach the payment due to U.S. Women's Alpine Ski Team. Having been named to the B Team, I am required to pay $15,000 as team fees to travel, train and compete internationally with the Europa Cup Speed Team and World Cup Team during the 2013-2014 season.
A Note From The Women’s Sports Foundation
The WSF kick started my fundraising efforts by awarding me $3,000 through their Travel and Training Grant. This Fund is only awarded to 26 women in the country who best embody the pursuit of advancing the lives of girls and women through sports. I am honorred to be awarded this grant and hope to reflect their mantra through all that I do.
For the Love of Skiing:
“This young lady is far more than a talented and emerging athlete. She is a dynamic and gifted advocate for women in sport who doesn’t miss an opportunity to mentor her younger peers. - Katie goes out of her way to visit schools and clubs to discuss the value athletics offers to young women. Needless to say, she is an excellent ambassador for the sport.” – Walt Evans, Aspen Valley Ski Club
I have one reoccurring vision where I can see myself as finally “making it” to the big leagues, my dream. I slide to a stop in the finish coral of the Aspen World Cup as I rear my head around to see the scoreboard. My name is in dotted yellow lights with a green light next to it, I’ve just won. I throw my hands in the air and then face the town I’ve grown up in and the people I’ve grown up with. This is pure bliss. I’ve had this vision ever since I really watched my first World Cup at age 11, as if this is who I was meant to become.
This is a big part of what drives me to higher achievement year after year, fighting day after day. I looked up to those American racers, posted their names on signs, and admired their composure as we bombarded them with pleads for their Bibs (which they gave us). If I can broadcast a message of “strive for your best” through my authentic positive attitude through all that I do, whether it be college classes or racing for podiums, then I’m achieving my dream.
This is where you and I intertwine. The shared pursuit of excellence while holding your morals tight, all in efforts of influencing the people around you to do the same; It’s called being a good role model. I am constantly striving to do just that and with your support, the possibilities grow.
Bio: The Ski Racing Anomaly
Being born in Dallas, Texas and starting to ski at age 6 does not scream "born to be a ski racer" and yet, that's exactly what it enabled me to become.
I am a ski racing anomaly for this reason. My mother's Denver and father's Chicago roots intertwined and ended up in Dallas where my two younger sisters and I were born. Five years later, we moved Aspen, Colorado. My childhood was speant in an Old Snowmass log cabin boardering a cattle ranch before moving up-valley closer to Aspen. I went to school K-12 in the Aspen School District and skied in the local Aspen Valley Ski Club, where I had to learn to keep up and I slowly progressed through ski school and into the racing program.
The end of my senior year at Aspen High School, I was named to the U.S. Development Team for Women's Alpine. I have been on the Development Team the past two years and as of May, 2013 have been named to the B-Team for the 2013-2014 season.
The past season was by far my best season yet, but was cut short due to tearing my ACL mid-March while training in Squaw. I have since had the fastest regulated recovery in all of Alpine U.S. Ski Team History, skiing at just five months post-injury at Mt. Hood. I've just recently returned from a camp in Chile where I was skiing the best of my life.
Goals & Success: Whatever It Takes
Like any aspiring athlete, I only have one athletic goal: become the best in the world.
My goals for the 2013-2014 season include; place top 15 in my first World Cup, win Junior World Champs SuperG and Downhill, win U.S. Nationals Downhill and SuperG, as well as ski my fastest every single day.
NorAm Downhill Title, 2013-2014 Downhill World Cup Spot
Qualified for U.S. Ski Team B Team
World Junior Championships ~ Le Massif, Quebec February 24, 26
SuperG 6th, Downhill 16th
NorAm Cup ~ Apex, B.C. February 8, 9, 11
SuperG 3rd, Downhill 1st, 1st
National Championships ~ Copper Mtn, ColoradoDecember 7
NorAm Cup ~ Copper Mtn, Colorado December 1, 2, 5, 6
SuperG 2nd, 6th, Downhill 2nd, 1st
Becoming A Booster
Currently I have product based sponsorships from Nordica, POC and Swix. Aspen Snowmass Co. and Aspen Club & Spa have gernerously let me use their locations via a ski pass and gym membership whenever I'm in town.
In thanks for any amount donated, even $1, Katie will send you a personalized, signed athlete postcard, to you, with love.
Other Ways To Help
Please consider sharing this with your friends, co-workers, crazy Aunt Gigi and her bunko friends.. anyone that shares my love for the Olympics, skiing pow, going fast and/or women in sport.
"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined." -Henry David Thoreau