(From Chris Devlin-Young)

We have before us a real opportunity to make history in disabled sports,
put ourselves on the map as pioneers and start to regain the ground that
the East has lost to the West.  Through-out the 1960’s and 70’s New England
was the country’s hot bed for disabled skiing.  Every educator and
competitor of renown has either come from the East or trained here.  And
yet, the past two decades have seen us become eclipsed by the West, and we
have never had a regional disabled race team.  We have lost the majority of
the country’s rising stars, top instructors (and even many students) to the

Many years ago a man named Hal O’Leary emigrated  from Quebec to the West,
and founded what has become the biggest adaptive ski school in the World.
Years later he recruited another young Easterner, an amputee skier who had
already started a race movement in the East, to head up the very first
adaptive competition center in the world.  His name was Paul Dibello.  He
was from New Hampshire, and his organization, the Winter Park Race Team,
has now become famous the world-over.  Teams from Canada, Japan, New
Zealand and Germany travel to Winter Park every year to train.

The Winter Park Race Team exists today solely because the people at  the
Winter Park Adaptive Ski School were people of vision.  They saw what Hal
O’Leary had been able to build from nothing, and they were willing to
support the competition center because they could see it was responding to
a need in the disabled community.  They built it and people came.  Not all
at once, mind you--it took years before the center was able to sustain
itself solely on racer fees and fundraisers.   But they stood at the edge
of the diving board, saw that there was potential for great reward farther
down the road and jumped in.

We are all at the brink of that same precipice today, for we have the
opportunity to create a "Winter Park East", of sorts.  Consider this:
Nearly half of the people who train at Winter Park come from the Eastern
United States.  If they had an alternative that promised comparable (or
better) training and coaching, right in their own backyard, don’t you think
they would take it?  I believe we have all we need to offer a viable
alternative and to take competive skiing to new heights.  I trained at
Winter Park, but after living in NH for a season, I now know that the East
offers far superior snow conditions for racing and for preparing racers for
competitions in Europe than "Colorado hero snow".  I know what it takes to
win.  And I have taught clinics for ten years, so I know coaching.

And I know one other thing, too:  If we bring this competition center into
being, the NEDST stands to become the premiere race training facility in
the world.