Yosemite National Park has a long history of ski racing, and this year Emerson Action, 14, of Ahwahnee, was immortalized after winning the 57th Annual Silver Ski Championship Cup this past winter at Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area (formerly Badger Pass). The Silver Ski race, for skiers 6 to 16, is the first and longest running slalom race in California.
The competitive racers came from ski teams across the Sierras including Yosemite, China Peak, Dodge Ridge, Bear Valley and Diamond Peak.
The Silver Ski Championship was the last race of the USSA Far West Central Series season.
The winner of the race gets their name on the perpetual Silver Ski Plaque to be placed in a glass cabinet at the ski lodge. Action has admired the shiny silver plaque and the names on it when she was 3 years old, when she first learned to ski in Yosemite. She soon joined the Yosemite Ski Team at the age of five.
Two exciting slalom runs on Wildcat would complete the Silver Ski race. In a sport that is frequently won by mere hundredths of a second, Action had a combined time four seconds faster than her closest competitor in the girls division. She was also fastest compared to the boys division, with a winning time by 5.5 seconds.
While at the awards ceremony, Action made the Yosemite community cheer and her family very proud as she accepted her awards in the Half Dome Pavilion in Yosemite Valley. A number of parents that have watched Action over the years racing, and watching her grow from a small child into a young lady, complemented her on her success.
They were also impressed to hear she is a math whiz and just completed calculus while still in middle school.
From Ahwahnee, with a population of about 2,200, to the world-classs racing resorts that surround Lake Tahoe, Action competes with the best racers in the USA. She made her mark this past season by earning the honor of being a member of the Far West Under 14 Ladies Regional Championship Ski Team as a top ski racer in the USSA Far West (California and Nevada).
Earlier in the season, Action placed fourth in Super-G at Alpine Meadows in Tahoe, making her the fourth fastest ski racer in the state of California and Nevada among other competitors in the 14 and under division. There were a total of 108 girls in the competition.
During the season, Action travels to Incline Village, Nevada to train with the Diamond Peak Ski Team and their coaches. She has trained with former Olympians Tamara McKinney and Josee Lacasse, and former US Ski Team Coach Konrad Rickenbach and her Head Coach Mark Norton, a former NCAA ‘A’ Team ski racer.
“Emmerson is highly coachable and excellent at self-evaluation,” Rickenbach said. “Bottom line - she trains hard, with precision focus, steely determination and unwavering perseverance.”
Yosemite Ski Team