Colby College first-year alpine skier Colbey Derwin (Edwards, Colo.) competed at the FIS Junior World Championships last week in Switzerland. He took the time to answer five questions.
1. You were born in New Mexico, ski for New Zealand, and have lived in Colorado now as well. How did you end up at Colby College in Maine?
My dad is from New Zealand, so I have dual citizenship. I usually spend nine months in the States and the remaining three on the South Island. I hold New Zealand really close to home and was proud to be representing NZL at the world championships. I found Colby to be my perfect fit, I wanted a small liberal arts college with a sweet ski team. To be able to continue competing in something I love while getting an education is really what it is all about.
2. Living in Colorado, I'm sure there was some thought to stay west to ski in college? Skiing-wise, what brought you out east?
I wasn’t sure what direction I was going until last year, but when I was given the opportunity to ski east, something felt right so I took it and am so glad I did!
3. You won the New Zealand junior slalom championship a couple times and qualified for the 2017 Alpine World Junior Championships in Sweden last March. Did that experience help you get ready for Switzerland?
All of my past races have definitely prepared me for the races in Switzerland, though I decided to not go to the junior world championships in Sweden. Having a little experience in the “big field” races such as national champs and continental cups definitely help with confidence when in the start gate.
4. You attended the Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy, which is a public school as part of the Eagle County Schools District. What was it like going to a ski and snowboard academy?
The academy was a tremendous part of my growth as an athlete and a student. Being able to ski six days a week while attending school is nearly unheard of, but ski academies such as Vail are able to make it work.
5. Even before the EISA season started, you had some success by winning a race in the Eastern Development Series. How key were the preseason races for your confidence and development.
Those races definitely brought me confidence going into the EISA season. It is always good to know there is some speed in your skiing even if it doesn’t come out all of the time.