PARK CITY, UT Nov. 12, 2002 (USSA)--Former two-time World Cup moguls champion and World Championships gold medalist Ann Battelle (Steamboat Springs, CO) has decided to retire from international competition, the U.S. Ski Team said Tuesday. Her retirement headlines a list of more than a dozen World Cup skiers who have retired since the end of the Olympic winter.
Battelle, a native of Williston, VT, turned to moguls skiing after graduating from Middlebury College in 1989 and moving to Steamboat Springs where she learned to ski the bumps from former U.S. Head Coach Park Smalley. She considered retirement after the 1998 Olympics but returned and produced the best skiing of her career, winning the World Cup moguls crown in the 1999 and '00 seasons; she also collected gold in moguls at the '99 World Championships in Switzerland as well as the dual moguls bronze medal and six U.S. championships four in moguls, two in duals.
"I'm done. I sent my letter (of resignation). It's all over now," she said. "I couldn't be happier. I'm sleeping easier."
Battelle, who has battled problems since a suffering a broken shoulder socket in September 2000 (three weeks before her wedding), figured she was done as the Olympics closed, she said, but toyed with the idea of returning until deciding it was time to move on with her life.
"I accomplished a lot. I'm 34 and I skied moguls competitively for 13 years," she said. "I'm sure when winter comes, I'll feel it a bit, but maybe I'll do some coaching. We'll see."
"Ann was a great champion who just hated to lose. We'll miss her leadership and her competitive fire," said Alan Ashley, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association vice president of athletics.
Battelle's retirement announcement follows two former high-profile teammates earlier this year, both an Olympic and World Cup champion Jonny Moseley (Tiburon, CA) and Donna Weinbrecht (Killington, VT), plus the well-documented retirement of former alpine Olympic and World Cup and world champion Picabo Street (Park City, UT) after her final Olympic race in February.
Other retirements by U.S. Ski Team members include:
Casey Puckett (Aspen, CO), four-time Olympian, five-time U.S. champion
Nina Kemppel (Anchorage, AK), another four-time Olympic skier who also is the all-time U.S. title-holder (19 championships); and Marcus Nash (Fryeburg, ME), a two-time Olympian and nine-time U.S. champion
Disabled Alpine skiers
Sarah Billmeier (LW-2; Yarmouth, ME), an eight-time Paralympics champion and six-time Worlds gold medalist; Muffy Davis (LW-10; Sun Valley, ID), who swept all four World Cup titles last season and is the reigning mono-ski giant slalom champion; Jennifer Kelchner (LW-4; Truckee, CA), the 1998 Paralympic downhill champion; Jake Rife (LW-3; Pocatello, ID); Carl Burnett (LW-11; Cape Elizabeth, ME); and Dan Kosick (LW-2; Binghamton, NY), and cross country skier Rob Walsh (B-3; Hanover, NH), former world champion and a three-time Paralympian
Tracy Evans (Park City, UT), a three-time Olympian who won the U.S. aerials title on her final competitive jump in March; Jerry Grossi (also Park City), four-time U.S. moguls or duals champion Garth Hager (Bothell, WA), Caleb Martin (Telluride, CO), and 1998 Olympians Alex Wilson (Buffalo, NY), Brit Swartley (Blue Bell, PA) and Mariano Ferrario (Park City, UT)
Brendan Doran (Steamboat Springs, CO), two-time Olympian and the 2000 U.S. 90-meter champion
Matt Dayton (Breckenridge, CO), 2002 Olympian, and Kris Erichsen (Steamboat Springs, CO), a two-time Olympian