McFadden hopes Cable 2015 will inspire next generation21.01.2015
USA’s McFadden will line-up at 2015 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships.
The USA’s multiple Paralympic medallist Tatyana McFadden has spoken of her belief that her home IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships in Cable, Wisconsin, could help attract a new generation of athletes to the sport.
McFadden made the transition from athletics to snow before the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, where she went on to win a silver medal in the 1km cross-country sprint sitting.
The 25-year-old is one of the most recognised para-athletes in the US, with a grand total of 11 gold medals from IPC Athletics World Championships and three from summer Paralympic Games. In 2014 she also became the first athlete, able-bodied or wheelchair racer, to complete the marathon Grand Slam back-to-back.
McFadden is confident that having a World Championships on home snow will be good for the sport in the US, especially if the crowds turn out.
“The sport is growing and I think people will find it really interesting, I think it will help get people involved if they want to try Nordic skiing,” she said. “It’s a lot of fun and it’s always interesting to see how athletes are going to do. We really enjoy the support.
“I do it not just for myself but for others and having that support system is absolutely amazing.”
McFadden admits that her love of skiing has grown into something which allows her to challenge herself in a different way to the track and road.
“Skiing was really hard to get used to because on track, races are all about time and you all start at the very same time,” McFadden said.
“I remember the first time I started skiing. I kept asking John [Farra, high performance coach] ‘how is my time?’ and he would say it was good but it doesn’t actually matter because the conditions are changing all the time.”
Like her teammate and fellow Sochi medallist Oksana Masters, McFadden first skied competitively at the same venue that will host Cable 2015.
Catching both of them in action where they started out is free for spectators alongside the medal ceremonies, which McFadden hopes she will feature in.
“We’ve had some good experiences there. It was a lot of fun so it’ll be good to go back much more experienced, and expecting more of myself.”
McFadden will compete alongside around 150 athletes from 15 countries at the Telemark Resort during Cable 2015, including eight other athletes from Team USA.