U.S. team picked for the 2003 World Nordic Ski Championships

Five Alaskans make the cut

Posted: Friday, January 24, 2003

PARK CITY, Utah - Five women and eight men, including two-time Olympian Carl Swenson, were named Tuesday to the U.S. ski team that will to compete in the nordic 2003 World Championships.

The championships begin Feb. 18 in Val di Fiemme, Italy.

The team includes five skiers with ties to Alaska, with four of the Alaska skiers coming off seasons that included competition in the 2002 Winter Olympics.

U.S. nordic director Luke Bodensteiner said final decisions on the team were made following the championships in Rumford, Maine.

Nine members of the 2002 Olympic Team are in the group, and, "We may add another skier, too, depending on results at the World Junior Championships or the U-23 championships, which are just before Worlds," he said.

Swenson, 32, who grew up in North Conway, N.H., and now lives in Boulder, Colo., boosted his national titles total to seven this month as he swept the free technique races.

Also on the team are Kris Freeman, 22, and his brother Justin, 26, both of Andover, N.H., who finished 1-2 in both class technique races, and Wendy Wagner of Park City, who won both women's classic races. Wagner has trained with the Gold 2002 program run by Alaska Pacific University of Anchorage the last five years.

Others on the men's team include Dave Chamberlain, 27, Bethel, Maine; Lars Flora, 25, Anchorage; Andrew Johnson, 25, Greensboro, Vt.; Torin Koos, 22, Leavenworth, Wash.; and Justin Wadsworth, 34, Bend, Ore.

Also on the women's team are Aelin Peterson, 28, Fairbanks; Kikkan Randall, 21, Anchorage; Aubrey Smith, 22, Seward; and Kristina Trygstad-Saari, 18, Bozeman, Mont. Smith is the only Alaska skier who didn't compete in the Olympics last year.

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