GB Moguls in off-season training at Graystone Action Sports

In early 2017 when performance director Dan Hunt announced the target of GB becoming a top five Olympic snowsport nation by 2030, it was clear that it would not be achieved by resting on the impressive prior performances of the Park+Pipe squad.

Meeting that target would require a dedicated focus across all disciplines, and one which achieved immediate attention was moguls with Hunt bringing former French team coach Bertrand Couette to oversee the programme.

At the time Hunt said, “Our goal within Moguls is very clear, and that is to become podium competitive by Beijing 2022. We believe that we now have the athletes capable of doing that and we want to support them in the best possible way.”

Following the 2018/19 season Hunt looks back on those comments with confidence after a series of results which prove that the programme is well and truly on the upward trajectory required to put GB in the medal frame in 2022.

“We couldn’t be happier with the direction we’re heading in moguls,” said Hunt. “From the outside moguls might be seen as a bit of a sleeper because the British public are more focussed on alpine, cross country or park and pipe, but the way this programme is progressing we’re confident that the breakthrough results we’ve seen this season will continue to get better and better.”

In part, Hunt is referring to the 2019 World Championships where Makayla Gerken Schofield (11th and 14th) and Max Willis (15th and 15th) scored GB’s best-ever individual and dual moguls results in the history of the event.

While 32nd was the best result Makalya achieved in her debut World Cup season in 2017/18, she scored World Cup points for the first time in the opening event of 2018/19 and went on to record top 20 performances.

Older brother Thomas Gerken Schofield’s best World Cup result in his first season was 35th – last winter he earned four top 20 finishes.

Thomas’ sister Leonie spent the season on the sidelines after suffering a back injury at the 2018 Junior World Championships, but she continues to hold promise for a leap to the top end of the sport having never finished outside the top 10 at Europa Cup level between 2013 and 2017.

“After two full seasons with a brand new programme coming up to speed, I can confidently say that this is working; we’re producing progressively better and more consistent results and we’re well and truly on the path we set out on,” said Hunt. “Two years ago we had a handful of very talented skiers with virtually no support who were relying on their own ability more than anything else.

“Now they’re not only benefitting from Bertrand’s experience on the snow, they’re also getting individualised strength and conditioning programmes and acrobatic coaching to hone and advance their tricks.

“Over the next six months the team will putting more into their summer training than they ever have before and by the time the first World Cups roll around I’m confident we’ll see those results continue to improve.”

 

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